About the charity:
We are a registered charity working with local communities and businesses to highlight the impact of plastic pollution on our environment and to try to minimise the amount of plastic entering our local seas and wider oceans. We started in Emsworth, Hampshire in 2018 as a group of volunteers giving our time to help clean up our local community spaces and, in time, the surrounding areas. We originally focussed on encouraging businesses to cut back on the amount of disposable, pointless plastic that is used. We ran a few beach cleans and started talking to the local communities in the Solent area, and grew from there.
We work with many different types of business on sustainability and to help them find ethical and sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic in their activities. We have a very busy school outreach programme and have reached thousands of children in the Solent area through assemblies and workshops. We work with community groups, giving talks and running activities and encouraging people to avoid single-use plastic and how to best dispose of it if they do need to use it. We still run regular beach and community clean-ups. It is a great way to get back in touch with nature, with benefits that include the obvious clear-up of litter, meeting like-minded people, and getting some often well-needed headspace and connection with nature.
How we (Together in the Hive) support:
We actively promote the volunteering opportunities to craft items for the charity, recruiting volunteers to help make the items (see the roles below) in their own homes. Then we act as a drop off point for the items, where people can drop them off and we arrange bulk delivery every couple of months to the charity.
We also promote Final Straw Foundations Litter Picking Events throughout Portsmouth.
The opportunities we are supporting:
Boomerang Bag (working from home)
We need help to make a 1,000 bags to go out into the local community to reduce single use plastic bags being used! We also need help distributing these bags and making sure people know about the scheme and shops use them in the correct way. We need to get posters up in all shops participating and refill shops with bags when they run out.
Plastic bag use has not gone down despite being told it has with the new charges. Bag use has actually increased with the use of bags for life, which are made from thicker, harder plastic. Plastic bags form a huge part of plastic pollution and we need help to try over come this together.
Our aims are to provide bags made from old materials, such as old curtains, bed spreads etc., to people who have forgotten their bags in local shops. The bags are to be borrowed and returned the next time they are passing.
Crochet turtles/whales/sea creatures
We require people to assist us in making sea creatures. These creatures need to have stomachs that we can either, fill with plastic pieces and reach inside the mouth to put in and out or have the whole stomach being able to be removed and opened up to show the plastic.
These creatures can be made to any size at all. We would love them to be big enough that a group of children can see easily if they are sitting a few rows back from us. However, we do not mind at all what size they are, as long as the whales are not life size! They can be any colour and have any designs on them as long as they can be used to represent plastic that is inside of our sealife.
We will happily pay for the wool used and would love to have photos of the people making them so we can post on our website who our amazing volunteers are. That decision is totally up to the volunteer though, but progress pictures would be brilliant if possible.
Crochet Water Balloons
We need around 50 or even more crochet water balloons so that we can use them at our eco clubs, beach schools, workshops and events.
We want to educate children about plastic pollution and we are sure the best way to do that is by having fun. Water fights are fun. They can be plastic free if we use crochet water balloons. We are using this opportunity to make children smile and in ways that are good for the planet.
We need the balloons to be around the size of the palm of a persons hand. They can be any colour at all and there is no set pattern unless you can find one on the internet.
We would be so grateful for our help and maybe the children will then want to crochet their own balloons for home so they don’t use plastic balloons anymore.
Making hedgehog & Bug Houses
We are aiming to make hedgehog and bug houses for every school possible. We want to create habitats for wildlife that are in need in our ever growing cities whilst educating children that local animals are endangered and need our help.
Wildlife homes will be put in schools so that children can check on the homes and feel responsible for saving British wildlife that are on the endangered list.
You will be required to make hedgehog houses out of wood and stained with protective paint so they will not rot away too quickly outside. This stain/paint must be safe for animals and can be purchased from any hardware shop. The roof should be on an angle and water proofed so again it lasts longer outside. Designs for hedgehog homes are available online but all we are expecting is the most simplest of homes. Unless you feel like making a hedgehog mansion!
Bug house designs are also available online and will be sent to schools to encourage children to go on bug hunts and love nature.
Croquet water balloons made by volunteers (Summer 2022)