LA PUENTE, CA – Bassett High’s Girls Build L.A. team held a ribbon-cutting ceremony May 23 in celebration of bringing two water-refill stations on campus as part of their efforts to have a more environmentally conscious campus culture.

The Girls Build L.A. team, also known as Olys Crushin’ It, came together in December 2016 with the vision of empowering female students to make a difference in their community, starting with improving recycling methods at Bassett High.

“Our main goal was to establish something that would last,” Bassett High senior Ariana Flores said. “Bringing water-refill stations adds a sense of accomplishment for us – we brought the stations and it was students making the difference.”

The students used a $2,000 Girls Build L.A. scholarship to pay for a portion of the stations’ cost, with the District covering the remaining expenses. The first station was installed in April, with the second in May, each containing a tracker indicating how many plastic bottles would have been used. Students saved approximately 500 bottles from being tossed into landfills within one week of using one water-refill station.

“I learned that it’s possible to make a difference and that you shouldn’t be scared to do something,” Bassett High senior Fernanda Jaramillo said. “We made an impact on our campus – that was rewarding to know.”

In addition to the water-refill stations, Olys Crushin’ It members provided recycling bins to the high school and are raising funds from cashing in recycling materials to fund more bins at Bassett Unified’s elementary and middle schools. Prior to receiving recycling bins for the high school, the team decorated cardboard boxes as temporary bins with the Olys Crushin’ It social media tags and information on their mission.

Olys Crushin’ It members are continuing to spread recycling awareness by hosting campus recycling activities, such as the water bottle flip challenge, giving presentations and coaching new members on how to continue their mission and goals. Bassett High students were also able to exchange ten recyclable bottles for a reusable water bottle and Girls Build L.A. pins.

“We were able to inspire the underclassmen to make a difference,” Bassett High senior Brianna Gomez said. “We hope to see this as a tradition that we were able to start.”

The Olys Crushin’ It team plans to expand and establish their organization at the middle and elementary schools.


052317_BASSETT_OLYSCRUSHINIT: Bassett High’s Girls Build L.A. team member Kay Miramontes cuts a ribbon for a newly installed water-refill station with Bassett Unified administrators, city and state elected officials and her peers. Girls Build L.A. came together in December 2016 with a vision to empower female students to make a difference in their community, starting with improving recycling methods at Bassett High.