Ozeankind® e.V.
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Environmental education project on Zanzibar

Phase one: The first phase of our environmental education project on Zanzibar has been completed.

Time to celebrate! Our five-month environmental education project on Zanzibar has come to an end – at least the the first phase. We will need a moment to realize what is happening here. In the first year of being an NGO we funded an international project and realized it with local project partners. Thanks to all the supporters in 2019 who have made the changes and improvements possible for the people of northern Zanzibar.

Short summary of what is our Project on Zanzibar all about.

Accompanied by special teaching units on the subject of environmental education, numerous workshops and clean-ups, the children of two schools in northern Zanzibar collected a total of around 95,000 empty plastic bottles in their neighbourhood during the first project phase from July to November 2019 and brought them to school.

After our recycling partner regularly collected the bottles for further processing, the material value was distributed back to the two schools again. From this money, urgently needed things for the schools can now be procured and excursions can be organised. And obviously kids LOVE excursions!

Nothing happens without us

For us it is important that we can make a difference TOGETHER with our local partners. It is about helping people to help themselves and NOT to give the impression that “rich, white western people come to a possibly poorer country and now want to change everything”.

We see ourselves as partners at eye level, seeking the conversation of the locals. Because they know what is not running smoothly in their country, what challenges one should prepare for and what contacts one needs. In short: we provide financial help & concepts how we as a team can reduce the plastic waste pollution & create more environmental awareness among the children.

In July 2019 we travelled to Zanzibar. To check our concept, to show our supporters how & where their donation will be used and to help for 3 weeks on site. We have shared our findings and experiences in this post for you.

Cashier’s check. Who is the winner? What did the kids learn?

The children enjoyed the project and learned a lot. They even said that this phase went by far too quickly and that they still want to continue learning. At least this is what we have been told 🙂 THIS makes us of course more than happy & proud! And no doubt – we will go on. But we will come to that later.

The competition was between the students of two schools: Kilindi school in Kendwa and Nungwi school in Nungwi.

1,234 kg PET plastic bottles were collected by the kids of Kilindi School and brought to the cage in the schoolyard. The total amount of HDPE (the plastic of the lid) was 25 kg. About 41.133 PET bottles! Assuming that one bottle weighs about 30g.

The kids of Nungwi collected 1.603 kg PET plastic bottles during the 5 months of the project. We have a winner! 🙂 14.5 kg of HDPE (the plastic of the lids) came together. 53.433 bottles! Assuming that one bottle weighs about 30g.

So happy! We did not expect this first project to be such a great success. We had wished for it but we could not even dream of this.

So what did the kids learn?

  • The project has given the kids knowledge about the dangers of plastic waste pollution and a better understanding of appropriate waste disposal.
  • You have learned the importance of recycling
  • You have learned how to protect the environment & especially the ocean
  • Above all, they got an idea of what the only thing you can do to protect the environment

So what happened to the bottles and lids after Zanrec Ltd. picked them up?

As soon as Zanrec has collected the plastic bottles and caps, they are taken to the collection point – where they are sorted again and any previously overlooked caps are unscrewed. The re-sorting is important because many of the old bottles – e.g. those which are hardly recognizable as plastic bottles because they are so old – can no longer be recycled and are therefore unfortunately residual waste.

All recyclable bottles (and fortunately this is the majority) are resold to another recycling company from the capital of Tanzania, Dar-es-Salaam – where they are shredded and shipped to Asia to be used for new plastic products. As of now, on Zanzibar there is unfortunately still no company that can do this.

The lids go to a company called Ozti (one click will take you to Facebook) – here they make beautiful new things out of it – bowls, chairs, plates, … by the way, we also visited them. The lids go to a company called Ozti (one click brings you to Facebook) – here they make beautiful new things out of it – bowls, chairs, plates, … by the way, we also visited them. We have compiled some impressions for you here.

How much waste was collected & disposed of during the monthly cleanups?

Every month there was also a CleanUp action, alternately in Nungwi & in Kendwa. Thereby the “normal” garbage was collected & separated from it plastic bottles & lids: 1.634 kg of waste were collected, what would go as residual garbage to the garbage incineration, goes on Zanzibar (unfortunately) to the garbage dump.

During these clean-up operations many plastic bottles were also found – 200 kgs were removed from the environment and recycled by ZANREC.

Where do we go from here?

The winning school is now allowed to go on an excursion (or do something else, whatever they want or need) from december, the costs are already secured. We are already looking forward to the photos of the kids!

Our project in Nungwi will continue as described above from January 2020. In Kendwa we will then initiate the second phase of our project. It is the (for us logical) further development of phase one. Therefore we will personally travel to the island again in February. We’ll tell you what we came up with in February. It will be sooooo great!!

You would like to accompany us virtually during the project? Check Instagram. We will take you to Zanzibar in February 2020.

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