We started this project a year and a half ago, driven by concern at seeing everything that was happening in the world, and how little was being done about it. We think that by bringing people together who want to be a part of our pick-up events, we can begin to generate awareness and reach large numbers of people. Once you’ve participated in one of these pick-ups, you won’t see your trash the same way again. The volunteers who come to the pick-ups are amazed by the amount of trash that we are able to generate, and how it can affect the ocean ecosystem.
In order for our pick-up events to aid the largest number of causes possible, we decided at the same time that we could hire people at risk of social exclusion to come help us. These people, whom we call “Collectors,” are hired thanks to donations and the funds we raise by selling our collection of shirts and sweatshirts made with organic and recycled fabric.
Up until this year we had only organized pick-ups in Barcelona, but from the very first day we conceived of Plastic Collectors our goal has been to organize them across the whole of Spain. Finally, in 2021 we have been able to take the first step. We have organized three pick-ups: in San Sebastian and A Coruña, and in September we will get underway in Mallorca. We don’t want to stop here. For that reason, we are going to continue to look for representatives in many more cities in Spain, and maybe even beyond. Without the help of our representatives in these different cities, this expansion would not be possible. They are Plastic Collectors, no matter where they are. They carry out the same labor as we do, looking for foundations to hire the Collectors, beaches or forests in need of a pick-up, and volunteers with the will to help.
As of today, we have been able to gather 1,823 kg. over 11 pick-ups, and we have been able to hire 30 Collectors.
We are very proud of what we are achieving, and of seeing that the number of people who want to chip in continues to grow. We know that there is a lot left to do, but we say that big changes always start out with small gestures. We have no use for the phrase “nothing I do will make any difference.” We, at the end of each pick-up, when we are weighing everything that we have found, give thanks for having helped make it possible for these kilograms of rubbish to stay out of the sea. This is thanks to everyone who has spent an hour and a half removing everything that doesn’t belong on the beach: microplastics, nets, fishing line, cans, packaging…everything that you can imagine.
We would like to encourage anyone who is curious about our association to learn more, and we invite you to come to one of our pick-up events. It’s a quick way to gain awareness and come to the aid of our oceans.
If you aren’t able to come to one of our pick-ups, you can also help us out financially in order to hire Collectors (people at risk of social exclusion), whether by donating or by purchasing one of our shirts or sweatshirts.