World Oceans Day was marked globally on the 8th of June this year.
At Ocean Sole, we marked this day by doing a 2 day long beach clean-up along the coast of Kenya, as well as planting 150 mangrove trees!
Our day started by getting on a dhow and sailing through the water to get to the beach we were going to clean.
We had volunteers from The LEAF Charity Project join us and employed the help of the mamas who live around the area join us for the beach clean and the mangrove planting.
The Leaf Charity works with communities around the world by protecting habitats and promoting reforestation, so they were helpful and educated the planters along the way!
We started off by handing everyone proper beach clean gear, masks, gloves and garbage bags.
We proceeded to Gastonia Beach and started the cleaning. It was extremely eye opening and appalling just how much trash was actually out there. To see the damage that we do to our marine life and the environment motivated us to want to do even more.
One of our team members even found a discarded camera, it looked like it had been in the ocean for a while and then got swept up to the beach. It had us thinking how little we care about the effects of our actions on the environment and our oceans.
We cleaned from 9:00 am to 1 pm, then took a (much deserved!) lunch break.
Baraka from the Leaf Charity Project prepared our lunch meal which we took on the dhow with us. It was Chapati, which is a delicacy in Kenya; especially for coastal communities. It is basically a bread dough made round and flat then fried with oil on a pan. We had the chapatis with coconut beans curry. It was delicious!
Afterwards, we proceeded to plant the mangroves. Interesting thing about mangroves, they need to be planted around water that is brackish. This type of brackish water is one which occurs in a natural environment, has more salinity than fresh water but not as much salinity as sea water.
One may ask, why do we need to plant mangroves? Of what use are they to us?
- The sturdy root systems of mangrove trees help form a natural barrier against violent storm surges and floods. This helps protect coastline areas and slows erosion.
- The mangrove forest waters provide local fishermen with a rich supply of fish, crabs, and shellfish to sell for income.
- Sustainable tourism offers a stimulus to preserve existing mangrove areas, with potential to generate income for local inhabitants. Often located near to coral reefs and sandy beaches, the forests provide a rich environment for activities like sports fishing, bird watching tours and kayaking.
- Mangroves form a nutrient-rich breeding ground for numerous species that thrive above and below the waterline. Some of the wildlife that live or breed in the mangrove ecosystem include fish, crab, and shrimp species.
We planted the mangroves till 5pm. The sun had begun to set and we sat around the beach and enjoyed some snacks. We had enough sodas, crisps, and popcorn to share with the local villagers who came to help with the mangrove planting. It was beautiful to see them joining us as they learn and understand that the mangroves will help keep their homes secure from storms for a long time!
The following day, we went to clean Kwa Ngala beach.
For those two days, we collected a total of:
- 232.95 kg of trash
- 23kg of Flip flops
Overall, the weekend was a huge success!
Wholeheartedly, we want to thank our sponsors who made it happen!
Spencer Ogden for supporting and sponsoring our mission and vision for the oceans and the planet.
Spencer Ogden is a global recruitment expert company on energy and infrastructure with sustainability at the core of their operations.
You can learn more about Spencer Ogden here: https://www.spencer-ogden.com/
We would also love to thank and appreciate Beach Token for their sponsorship towards our Ocean Day initiative.
The Beach Collective is a blue circular economy platform powered by our native currency $BEACH, bringing together climate conscious consumers, planet-friendly brands and businesses and ocean conservation champions in a single ecosystem where every transaction funds ocean regeneration and climate action.
Beach Token are great eco warriors and you can learn more about them here: https://beachtoken.io/
Sincerely, we extend our gratitude to CoastLove who were our co-partners for Ocean Day.
Coast Love is a South Florida organization that is fighting hard to end ocean pollution and support high impact area communities.
We appreciate what they do for our oceans and the planet. You can learn more about OceanLove and their amazing work here: https://coastlove.org/
The day wouldn’t have been a success without our amazing volunteers. We want to thank everyone who came out to help with the beach clean and mangrove planting. When we protect this earth and wildlife, everyone benefits! You are all spectacular & did an amazing job! Thank you, thank you.
We only have one earth and it’s in dire straits. Mother earth is calling upon us to take action.
You can take action by volunteering in one of our beach clean-ups exercises, physically or virtually. Also, you can host a beach clean-up through donations. Every single donation will go towards removing trash from our oceans to help our marine life and the environment.
A $25 donation will help remove 182 lbs from our ocean. Visit us here to learn how you can become a virtual volunteer or host a beach clean-up!
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for custom projects, creative ideas, or just to see how to stay connected & get involved with our mission!
Written by: Maureen Simba