West Marine raises funds for BlueFuture program

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West Marine said it raised more than $30,000 to support its nonprofit BlueFuture grants program during a month-long company fundraiser in December.

The company said the amount raised by associates and customers in stores was triple the amount raised during the same month in 2016.

BlueFuture provides 50 grants annually to community-based organizations that are dedicated to getting young people on the water.

“All of us at West Marine are amazed by the outstanding support we received for our BlueFuture grants program,” Laura Barry, West Marine’s director of communications, said in a statement. “For these nonprofits, every single dollar matters. BlueFuture grants allow recipients to buy or replace vital equipment, hire experienced staff and fund scholarships so even more kids can get out and around the water.”

Each year West Marine seeks to raise a minimum of $10,000 during the Month of Giving so the company can continue to provide grants at the current level.

“By raising over $30,000, we can continue to provide 50 grants annually,” Barry said. “It means so much to see our associates, customers and friends pull together and work hard to surpass that goal. We’re grateful to every one of them for their generosity during the busy holiday season.”

The next grant cycle opens April 1 and runs through May 1. West Marine said nonprofit, youth-focused, community-based organizations that teach sailing, powerboating, fishing or boatbuilding skills, foster aquatic sustainability and conservation practices and encourage learning in the marine sciences are urged to apply and can visit westmarine.com/BlueFuture to fill out an application, starting April 1.