A week ago FatStick was lucky enough to work alongside a 5 School Community initiative aimed at cleaning the beaches around Hayling Island.
Having made the decision at the beginning of the year, Reuben was eager for FatStick to get out there and start making its mark as a responsible brand. Everyone can talk about it, but doing it is a different matter. No sooner had Reuben made his intentions clear, our guy on Hayling had made contact with the Hayling Island 5 Schools Committee and requested their help.
As luck would have it, a Beach Clean was already on the cards and as such, a beautiful relationship was formed! FatStick & The Hi-5 were all over it!
The planning began by identifying a location and then working backwards. We had the volunteers, we had the location - now all we needed was a time and a whole list of logistics!
This is where the community came together!
Bringing It Together
So, in a ‘nutshell’ the events unfolded with Gary Slydell of Hayden Vehicle Rentals (who has a children in 2 of the schools) giving us 2 minibuses for transport. Greg Tonks of Stoked Kitchen put us in touch with Andy Lenaghan (Hayling West Councillor) and Andy arranged for the rubbish collection, the bags, the gloves and the litter-pickers. Not only that, in the time it took to arrange the clean, Andy also arranged funding for the schools to be provided with their own litter pickers and gloves. Finally, in came Mike Owens of Mike Owens Photography who volunteered his time….he also pulled an ace from up his sleeve, but we’ll come back to that later.
With the big day on the horizon our guy in Hayling, Andy Warner and the Chair of the Hi-5 Lou Earp worked closely on tying up all the loose ends and making sure nothing would get in the way of this – the first FatStick & Hi-5 Beach Clean.
The Big Day
On the 2nd February, with the vans delivered, 40+ children and teachers, equipment waiting and 2 huge FatStick flags in the ground marking the start of the clean - Lou, Reuben and Andy walked the beach. All were a little concerned that on their walk to make sure there were no hazards, they couldn’t see much rubbish! All was good though. Today was a statement of intent and there was plenty of coastline to choose for next time…and there will be a next time.
The kids arrived, the gloves were donned, the safety talk was given and Andy wanted to make sure the kids knew why they were there. All of them, each one from 5-12 years old could tell him what was happening with plastics and litter in the seas. Those that say ‘kids don’t listen’ have never met this bunch of super-stars!
It was on – we were cleaning and how wrong was it to think there was hardly any rubbish to be collected – 3 full bags later the clean ended and the children had done themselves, the schools and FatStick very proud! Just WOW! What can be achieved with a little focus and community spirit is mind-blowing.
We Can All Make A Difference
So there’s the line in the sand….literally! The challenge has been laid down to all of you, to everyone who takes a walk along the beach, swims, paddles, SUPs, surfs, widsurfs, kite surfs…you see where we’re going! If you use the beach, help keep it clean. You don’t need to arrange 5 schools or hundreds of people. You alone, yes, just one person can make a difference!
So there it is, the inaugural Hayling Beach Clean with FatStick/Hi-5 and the next one is already being planned with the location selected! This is now penned in every month throughout the year. We will make a difference!
…..we nearly forgot! Mike Owens and his ‘Ace’…Mike got the kids a double page spread in the newspaper! In the eyes of the kids – Mike in now a hero who has made them famous!
Mike you Legend!!
What a day and what an event! The video is on the Facebook page for you all to see. We also had a visit from SUPM’s man on the ground Tez who grabbed an interview with Reuben. You can see that on the SUPM Facebook page.
Share Your Hard Work
Share your cleans with us. If you take part in a beach clean or simply do your own – throw the pictures at us and we’ll celebrate your amazing work!
Don’t Destroy What You Go To Enjoy