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Hi, I’m Ali! I’m ten years old and as you may have guessed, this is the first time I’ve ever written a blog. So … thanks a lot for reading it and I hope you like it.
In this post I want to talk to you about how I got involved with Kids Against Plastic and how it’s inspired me to start a campaign and do whatever I can to have a positive impact on the world.
Let’s go back to when I first started to become aware of some of the problems connected to the climate crisis. Do you remember 2020? Remember that whole lockdown thing we all did? Well, that was a big moment for me for a few reasons.
Firstly, we were off school so my parents had to come up with ways to help me learn. We thought of fun projects for us to do at home: things like auditing (counting) all of our waste and recycling, and observing how long ice takes to melt in different places (spoiler alert, it lasts longest in the fridge). We also made a graph of the different colours of Skittles — with Skittles — but that has nothing to do with the environment. It was just delicious.
It was also during lockdown that my Great Aunt, Viv, told me all about “Let’s Go Live” with Maddie and Greg. And then, right when we were in the middle of our plastic audit, we saw an interview with Amy and Ella. It was great when I found out that they had the Kids Against Plastic Club (the KAP Club). I knew I wanted to join.
The KAP Club
I’ve been a member of the KAP club since I was about seven. We meet every Saturday morning at the KAP Connect. It’s a super fun meeting where everyone talks about what they’ve been doing over the past week. Amy and Ella lead the meetings and give us updates on news about the environment. We’re all given a chance to speak and present about things we care about. It’s called KAP Voices. I remember the first time I presented — I was so nervous.
The Connect, the weekly Saturday morning meet-up, is a great place to share ideas and play some super fun games. The presentations from the club members are really inspiring. The best thing is you can make friends with kids of all ages from lots of different countries, like Australia and Spain.
In the KAP team, we’ve always supported each other with our ideas. Skye Neville, one of my eco heroes, has a campaign to stop plastic toys going on the covers of magazines. You can find it here: #KAPTat
Because of the amazing support everyone gives in the team I was delighted when they encouraged me to start a campaign. I’ll get to that soon.
The World Retail Congress
When I think back to my first KAP Voices presentation and how nervous I was, it’s hard to believe that only two years later I was asked to speak at the World Retail Congress to help give the youth’s opinions and ideas to some of the leaders of the biggest retail groups around the world.
It was scary to speak to 800 adults but I knew it was important to share my ideas and, thanks to lots of practice with my parents and all the amazing mentoring from Amy, I knew I was ready.
As soon as I came off stage I was relieved. Plus, someone gave me a bag of chocolate to say well done, so I was happy too!
After I gave my talk we all went to a big event. It was great because I got to see Junk Kouture. You should check them out — they make clothes from waste! It’s so cool. Unsurprisingly, the room was full of adults. They were all saying I was brave, but to be honest it didn’t feel like I was being brave. It just felt like it was something that needed to be said. So, I said it!
The One in a Million Litter Pick Campaign
I’ve always been crazy about litter picking. It was one of the first things I ever did when I saw I could make a difference. It showed me that just one person can do something good, so imagine if LOADS of people do something good. It’s not just good then. It’s great! That’s probably why I was appointed Chief-Pick-Up-Officer for the club.
From litter picking I’ve learnt so much about the environment, not only about plastic but about the whole environmental movement. We all know that picking up plastic doesn't solve the whole problem, but it's a really good place to start. Together, we believe we can turn this big challenge into something we can tackle together. That’s why, along with @KidsAgainstPlastic, we launched the One In a Million Campaign.
Our main goal is to pick up and log one million pieces of plastic litter in a year. This will, hopefully, make people aware of how dangerous plastic pollution is and help them understand that we all have a responsibility to fight against it. It's not just about picking up litter; it's about making sure everyone understands the bigger picture. We want people to know that we consume too much plastic and that it's hurting our planet.
Imagine what would happen if I, along with 2739 other people, picked up just one piece of plastic litter every day for a whole year. That's a lot of plastic we could prevent from harming our environment! Suddenly, the challenge doesn't seem so impossible anymore.
We’ve already done almost 900 picks from across the globe. Check out this map. Don’t you want to put your dot on that map and be one in a million too?
The mission goes beyond picking up litter. We want to show everyone that we need to change our habits when it comes to using plastic. We want to empower people to demand real action from the people in charge and make them change the laws and the way plastic is made.
If you join me in this campaign, we can make a difference. Together, we can ask for better laws and practices that will make our environment cleaner, greener, and safer for everyone.
Kids Against Plastic and litter picking got me really interested in protecting the environment. Maybe it will do the same for you too!
So that’s about it really. They’re the steps I’ve taken on my journey to do what I can for the planet. I know I’m only ten but I also know if we don’t try and make our voices heard then there’s no chance anyone will ever listen to us.
Go out there, grab your litter picker, take a picture, log it on the app or, alternatively, share what you’re doing to One in a Million with everyone using the hashtag #1MillionLitterPick.