Welcome to our amazing Duke of Edinburgh volunteers!
With our environment facing an unprecedented amount of plastic litter that is choking our oceans and causing untold dangers to wildlife, we at the Final Straw Foundation know just how important it is to keep this waste off our streets, beaches and parks. This is where we are so lucky and privileged to be linking up with some of the amazing young individuals that are working towards their youth achievement for the Duke of Edinburgh Award.
The DofE scheme is the world’s leading youth achievement award that helps youngsters from ages 14 to 25 with skills, experience and confidence to navigate through the challenges that adult life can throw at them. As a part of the volunteer section for the award, students that have a particular interest in the environment have been working with us to pick up litter pick their local areas, speak to businesses about their single-use plastic use and create databases of businesses and schools who may be interested in working with the campaign.
To date, we have twelve inspiring DofE volunteers working towards the campaigns goals and objectives of improving ocean and environmental health. The volunteers come from several local towns and villages, and all focus on particular areas close to their homes. It has been more difficult than normal for these volunteers with the Covid pandemic restrictions, and their commitment and enthusiasm has been nothing short of inspiring. Week in, week out, these guys have taken to the beaches and parks and have worked to make a change. We really wish we could meet up with them all in person to express our thanks but in these uncertain times email and zoom meets are having to suffice!
Three of these fantastic students have been helping us for the last 20 weeks now clearing up a local patch of beach front that has been severely neglected for years and was in desperate need for some attention. The students have worked tirelessly each week to remove any waste they can find on the beach, especially plastics, and bag it up ready for the local waste management team to collect. 14-year-old Jamie, Josh and Kaitlyn, all from Portsmouth have formed a little picking bubble and have headed out, come rain or shine, to do their bit. Here’s what they have to say about their experience and why they have chosen to volunteer with us.
“Heathy beach makes happy life let’s make it clean and see it shine. It important for our future to make sure our beaches are kept clean and the wildlife kept safe. Since cleaning up the beach my family have been round and used it more and enjoyed its glory. I enjoy giving back to my community and I feel great knowing I am helping make a difference in this world”
“I thought it would be a great idea to combine my Duke of Edinburgh award with cleaning up the shoreline as it’s not only helping the environment but also my local community. During lockdown heading to the beach has been great to help keep me active and clear my mind too, so it’s been a bonus to me taking part in this as well as helping our environment”
“I wanted to clean the beach to show how beautiful it can be when its clean and help the environment and have a place to be proud of. We saw the final straw foundation on Facebook and knew that we had to get in touch to see if we could work with them. We’re so happy to have found a local company who feels just like we do about our planet”
If you or anyone you know is undertaking the Duke of Edinburgh award then we would be happy to hear from you and assist with the tools to complete volunteer hours with us helping our planet. Send us an email and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
It’s not our mess, but it is our planet. Together we can be the difference we want to see in the world.