Previous beach cleaners need not apply! The Marine Conservation Society (MCS), the UK’s leading marine charity, is looking to hook up people over 50 with their first ever MCS beach clean.
The charity is running a clean up for over 50’s at Sand Bay, near Weston-super-Mare on Saturday May 27th. It’s specifically aimed at people who were born in 1967 or before and who have never taken part in a beach clean in their half century or more.
The clean up at Sand Bay is part of a series of beach cleans around the south and east coasts of England funded by NESTA, the innovation foundation. The aim is to encourage people over 50 to start volunteering in something they’ve never done before and then for organisations to find innovative ways to keep them coming back for more!
Research in 2016 from the Centre for Ageing Better, found people 50 and over were more likely than younger people to be highly committed to voluntary activity and were responsible for approximately 40% of all the volunteering, charitable giving and civic participation in the UK. But, conversely, this age group are also more likely than others not to make any contributions at all, with a large proportion completely disengaged.
If you were born in 1967 or before, it was a period of great firsts – Coronation Street hit our screens for the first time, Yuri Gagarin was the first man in space, the first ring pull can was invented. Wimbledon went colour on BBC2 and the first heart transplant took place.
Now MCS is hoping people who have seen so many firsts in their lifetime will embrace another first – taking part in a beach clean with MCS!
Justine Millard, MCS Head of Volunteering and Community Engagement says: “We’d love people to join our army of 50 somethings off to do their very first beach clean with MCS! Over 50’s are often of the generation that went to the beach as children and have then spent intervening years holidaying out of the UK. Their memory of the seaside may be totally different from today’s reality. Today there’s more plastic litter, more polystyrene, more cigarette butts, more bits of balloons. We’d like them to help us get our beaches back to the way they remember them – so our grandchildren and those of our friends, can build safe sandcastles in a healthy environment.”