Howdy! 😀 Before we explore Eco World Watamu… Take a moment to imagine a world without white, sandy beaches… A world where you can’t swim in the ocean because the water is awash with filthy waste and the marine animals have died out over time… 🙁
It’s a sad, bleak world to imagine right? Hopefully that’s a world we’ll never have to see thanks to initiatives like Eco World Watamu…
Why Eco World Watamu?
Did you know?? Approximately 1.4 billion pounds of trash per year enters the ocean, and the most common element is plastic.
Yup! And because plastic does not break down easily, it’s very harmful to marine life.
Marine animals like Sea Turtles, Whales and Dolphins mistake plastic for food, which can be fatal. Moreover, plastic suffocates other marine creatures like corals, thus hindering their breathing and feeding.
Closer home, this problem is not only a big threat to our Marine life, but also to local communities’ livelihoods and Tourism at the Kenyan Coast.
In 2009 the Watamu Marine Park and partners, set up Eco World Watamu Centre to address this issue. One of their major aims is to engage the community in cleaning up the beaches and recycling waste into art.
Enter The Eco World Watamu Experience…
Eco World Watamu Centre is located in the heart of Dabaso Village, and next to Mida Creek in Watamu Kenya.
I had the privilege of visiting Eco World Watamu, during our Humpback Whale Chasing expedition, together with Mwarv, Josh Kisamwa and the Magical Kenya team.
And as you walk in, you get a true sense of what’s to come…
Meet the Real Heroes… The Blue Team!
We met Julie Alego, the Project Coordinator at Eco World Watamu, who gave us a quick tour of the place…
Our tour started out at the Waste Sorting area where we met some members of the Blue Team.
The Blue Team is a group of 25 waste collectors and recyclers from the local community.
We found them sorting through a huge pile of waste for plastic, bottles, slippers, glass and more… At least 2 tonnes of waste is collected weekly.
Part of Eco World Watamu’s objectives is to change the community’s perception of waste. When they regard waste as a potential source of income, they’ll be more inclined to recycling, than pollution.
Sauti Ya Wanawake
Next up we met ladies from ‘Sauti Ya Wanawake’ who were busy filling up bottles with sand…
They told us more about Sauti Ya Wanawake, a group of 30 women formed to support and represent the ‘voices of the voiceless’.
This includes women and girls who are victims of rape, domestic violence and HIV/AIDS. They use income generated from the sales at the Centre to fund their programs.
Creativity at its best…
The buildings at Eco World Watamu Centre are a creative sight to behold.
They fill the bottles with sand to make them sturdier and ensure there’s no air trapped in. They’re later reduced into the size of a brick, which is used for construction.
The result is not only beautiful to look at, but also safe. Apparently, in case of a fire, the plastic melts out and the sand helps to kill the fire.
We also met Wahito, one of the SYW ladies, working masterfully to create beautiful pieces of art and jewellery from Slippers.
Everywhere you look around Eco World Watamu, you’ll see evidence of their hard work and efforts to save our ocean.
- The next time you are in Watamu, book a tour at Eco World Watamu and meet this heroic men and women. 🙂
- By supporting them and their art, you’ll be playing a part to keep our oceans clean, marine life safe and give future generations the opportunity to enjoy white sandy beaches.
- You can purchase the artworks or find out more about construction bricks at the Centre.
- Let’s avoid littering in any shape or form.
- Check out my post: 7 Things To Do In Watamu:Old Is Gold!
Many thanks to the team at Eco World Watamu for having us, and kudos to them for their great efforts!
Thank you for reading my friends! I hope you’re inspired to be part of the solution!
I’d love to hear from you, leave your comments, questions or feedback down below. 😀
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