Grantee: The 5 Gyres Institute
Project Title: Mi Mar/My Sea
Grant Type: ecoSolution
5 Gyres Mi Mar/My Sea pilot program was a tremendous success.
– 5 Gyres Offical
5 Gyres launched the Mi Mar/My Sea Program to engage underserved high school students in one-day research expeditions to learn about plastic pollution through hands-on citizen science aboard a boat off the coast of Los Angeles. Students learned about the history, impacts, and solutions to plastic pollution while collecting samples of ocean plastics using one of 5 Gyres signature trawls. The goal of the Mi Mar/My Sea Program was to engage and empower a diverse group of next-generation leaders to continue the fight for a planet free of plastic pollution.
Before attending the boat trip, students completed a waste audit to determine how much waste they were currently producing and where it was coming from. During the trip, students received an interactive presentation about ocean plastic pollution sources, impacts, and solutions. Students then analyzed retrieved plastic found in the ocean – by a 5 Gyres manta trawl – and broke into groups to discuss solutions.
One group decided after the trip to encourage their school cafeteria to switch from single-use plastic to reusable utensils. Another group found eight mylar balloons in the water, and pledged to refuse balloons during any festivities.
Continuous impact/Community engagement:
The students now have a new view on plastic pollution and the knowledge and experience to implement plastic-free habits. The 5 Gyres Institute plans on expanding this program next year so they can engage more underserved youth in the plastic pollution movement.