New charity set up to address some of issues impacting on our precious shores
Rubbish on beaches is just one sign that all is not as it should be with UK beaches and seas and one that we have probably all seen. But there are a number of threats facing our seas and in 2011 Helen Webb and Rachel Lopata set up a new charity called Sea-Changers to address some of issues impacting on our precious shores.
Sea-Changers aims to raise thousands of pounds for marine conservation work in the UK. Helen and Rachel wanted to try and harness the passion and concern that many people who enjoy the sea have and turn this into something badly needed to address some of the oceans serious problems…Money for marine conservation. The organisation was set up after Helen and Rachel became increasingly concerned that the sea was facing crisis. Helen said;
‘Our thinking was very simple. We recognised there were a range of problems facing the oceans and we wanted to do something. Our response has been to set up a charity that raises money for marine conservation in the UK by creating a community of Sea-Changer businesses and individuals who will work together to raise money for marine projects’.
‘We want people to imagine that there is a turnstile on the sea and every time you went diving, for a surf, sailing or on a cruise you were somehow asked to give a pound as a kind of entry fee… and all the money raised was used to make a huge difference to marine conservation projects’ .
‘We know many people love the sea and love being able to practice their sport and leisure pursuits in, or by the sea. Sea-Changers provides these sea-users with quick and easy ways to give something back to the sea and make a difference to the marine environment by making small donations to marine conservation that when added together can make a BIG difference’.
Sea-Changers raise money in a number of ways:
• Asking marine retailers to add a small/optional amount to your bill when paying for diving, sailing, windsurfing, surfing and leisure cruising services.
• Asking those who get pleasure from the sea to text SEAS10£1 to 70070 to make a £1.00 donation after enjoying a day on the beach.
Money raised by Sea-Changers will be distributed to a range of projects and charities. 100% of donations received are passed on to marine conservation charities, with no administration costs subtracted. Projects funded will all fall within one of the following areas:
•Marine Reserves/Protected Marine Areas
•Direct Marine Clean Up Action
•Education, Campaigning and Awareness
•Species Protection and Research
Sea-Changers is already working with dive companies, chandleries, sailing charters companies and dive schools and they are keen to recruit new marine related businesses to work with. If you run a marine related business and would like to become a Sea-Changer business you can register via the Sea-Changer website or to find out more about how to support the work of Sea-Changers and become involved register here.