Plastic Pollution Expedition with 5 Gyres

Tiny Tiff
Tiny Tiff at the beach ready to learn about plastic!

I am so blessed and thrilled to have been accepted to join a plastic pollution expedition with the non-profit www.5Gyres.org .   It is the journey of a lifetime through the Atlantic from Bermuda to Iceland.  It was a detailed application process and I wasn’t sure if I would qualify, not having a degree in marine biology and not having any experience being on a sailing vessel for more than a day.  I visualized everyday and knew in my heart that I was meant to go, so when I got the email confirming that I was selected, I was over the moon.  Then…reality set in.  How was I going to pay for this?

It is an expensive trip which requires 100% self-funding in addition to the complete volunteer nature of the project, with the seat alone costing $8,500.  I will find a way!  My way currently is a loan and I thought, something will come.  I was led to starting a crowdfunding campaign.  The irony is that I have given to so many myself over the years; from multiple friends’ films, to tech ideas like “the shuttr” for selfies from Muku Labs, to a new kind of water bottle and company Treeson, and a new innovative carnival with no animals like STEAM Carnival.    People who want to make a difference.  I never thought I would then be asking for funding myself.

I am not great at asking for things, much less money from friends, family and strangers, even though they believe in my mission.  It is truly an amazing way to bring community together.  I had a dream recently that I was swimming through a plastic soup amongst the fish, a murky area with tiny pieces of plastic surrounding me.  I know the plastic pollution is not good out there.  I’m a little worried as to what I’ll find, but we can’t stick our head in the sand (so to speak) and pretend it doesn’t exist.  We must first pinpoint (isolate) the problem and then find the solution.  I want to be a part of the solution.  I HAVE TO BE PART OF THE SOLUTION! It won’t be easy, but it can be done and the 5 Gyres are committed to making it happen.

You ever hear of microbeads?  These exfoliating balls that are found in your facial cleansers and body wash?  Did you know that they are made of plastic?  Every time you shower or wash your face 20-30,000 tiny microbeads run down your drain and out into our water, never to break down, but float around and have fish, marine life and birds mistake them for food.  How did we get to a place where plastic was created to specifically be washed down the drain and into our water system?  Well the 5 Gyres have helped change policy and a number of companies that produce products with microbeads have agreed to take them out.  That’s a HUGE win!  This is the work that the 5 Gyres does and this is the work I want to help make happen.  So I hope you’ll help support me and my trip as a citizen of the planet, and of the ocean, to see what’s out there, share my findings, and see what solutions we can come up with as a community.

Another impressive non-profit is Heal The Bay and their annual gala gives awards to honorees that have done so much to help make changes to our local water.  Their award has a quote on the back…

Individually we are a drop...

“Individually we are one drop, together we are an ocean.” – Ryunosuke Satoro

Truth!

Find more at my Indiegogo link

Please consider supporting me as I undertake this challenge. No donation is too small 🙂  THANK YOU!

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