Those needing some help wrapping gifts have a place to go this holiday season. And it’s all going to support a local coral restoration project in Key Largo.

Coral Shores student Angelino Bello recently organized a gift-wrapping fundraiser that will begin Saturday, Dec. 17 at noon outside Divers Direct, Mile Marker 99.6, in Key Largo. Those who bring their presents for gift wrapping will be supporting coral restoration at North Dry Rocks. Bello is working alongside Beth Rosenow, Coral Shores marine science teacher, and Reef Renewal, run by Ken Nedimyer, on the project that began four years ago. Bello said she’s looking to raise money to support dive trips to begin the project. 

“I started this restoration project in memory of Jerry Greenberg, a beloved diver and ocean advocate of the Florida Keys, who was a good family friend of mine, so getting coral back onto this reef that he loved would be a huge accomplishment,” Bello said. “I aspire to make a major impact on Key Largo with this project and make a statement about how important it is to inspire and promote changes that will benefit the overall health of our ecosystem.”

Volunteers from the Coral Shores Environmental Club and Marine Science classes will be assisting Bello with holiday gift wrapping outside Divers Direct. People can bring gifts to have them wrapped for free. Bello said those wishing to make a donation towards the project would be greatly appreciated. 

The holiday wrapping fundraiser will take place Saturday, Dec. 17 and Sunday, Dec. 18 from noon to 4 p.m. at Divers Direct. The volunteer gift wrappers will return on Wednesday, Dec. 21 through Friday, Dec. 23 from noon to 4 p.m.