A younger generation of people is emerging that is far more outspoken about climate issues than ever before. In an effort to increase awareness of ocean health and the devastating impact of plastic pollution on our oceans, UKSA, the charity and maritime training centre, has announced a new partnership with Final Straw Solent. This collaboration aims to educate young people at the centre on ocean health, creating a more conscientious generation of sailors that are motivated to protect the seas for the future.

“Final Straw Solent is a non-profit environmental organisation that works with businesses and communities to raise awareness of plastic pollution in the oceans and to encourage positive behaviours to help our environment and ocean health. Partnering with UKSA is an amazing opportunity to reach young sailors,” explains Bianca Carr, founder of Final Straw Solent.

Through presentations and planned activities during all training courses, young people training at the centre based in the Isle of Wight will learn about sustainability and plastic pollution. Each student will learn about the importance of protecting our oceans and what steps they can take to actively minimise pollution.

“Here at UKSA we are passionate about actively minimising plastic pollution and, thanks to the high number of young people coming through our doors each year, we are well placed to deliver the vital message of ocean health to the next generation,” comments Ben Willows, CEO of UKSA.

The UKSA is expecting 6000 young people to take part in the initiative in 2019. The partnership highlights UKSA’s attempt to demonstrate its commitment to reducing the use of plastic. The centre has operated without single-use plastic since June last year, replacing plastic cups and sandwich containers with compostable and reusable packaging. They also installed a Seabin in December 2018 which intercepts debris, trapping it in a catch bag to be disposed of properly.

On the initiative, UKSA Ambassador, renowned yachtswoman and ocean health campaigner, Dee Caffari, MBE said: “It has been said many times before, but our best defence against the deterioration of our ocean’s health is, in fact, education. This collaboration will bring the topic of ocean health and sustainable best practice to the forefront of every young person training in Cowes. As UKSA is helping to produce the future generation of sailors, this is a huge step forwards ensuring we can be confident that our oceans, coasts and waterways will be in safe hands. Awareness, understanding and then a passion to help create positive change is important, and together UKSA and Final Straw Solent can do this. I am excited about this partnership.”

As ocean health becomes an ever more pertinent issue, we can expect to see many more initiatives like this.


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