Britta’s Boat

How many of you have wanted to sail into the unknown and discover hidden tropical islands just like pirates used to do?  Britta Slippens is a modern day pirate and has been sailing around Indonesia for around 20 years. She raised her children in the pristine waters and on white sand beaches sipping coconuts fresh from the tree. Recently, she has witnessed first-hand the impact of human consumption on these formerly pristine islands. Britta invited the Earthbound group to Lombok to enjoy this tropical paradise, but more importantly to raise awareness of the difficulties the inhabitants face.

Britta fell in love with these majestic pirate boats, also known as a phinisi when she was backpacking through South Sulawesi.  With only $5000 to her name, she courageously ordered the construction of a $50,000 vessel and set to work figuring out how to pay for it. For more than 20 years now, Britta has funded her dream by chartering her phinisi and sharing her love for the ocean with thousands of people.

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Earthbound having fun on the boat!!  – Photo by Eko Riyanto

 

Twenty years ago, trash was not an issue. The locals barely even used plastic, but with the influence of modern globalisation, that has quickly changed. It is so sad to see trash everywhere on this tortured paradise. There are plastic bags floating on the ocean and plastic packages flooding rivers. Pollution is a huge problem globally but on tiny islands such as Lombok, it is even more apparent.

Since Britta has identified this problem she has not complained about it, she has taken action. She has formed a team of activists from all around the world, both young and old, local and international, who have devoted their lives to helping make Lombok greener. This movement is called Oceans Care.  They focus on educating the locals about the plastic problem, and the potential solutions. They produce concerts and other events to raise funds for the cleanup effort. Their goal is to buy a machine that operates with the currents of the river or solar panels and collects all the trash that is about to go into the ocean.

     If you love something, fight for it!  To learn more about Oceans Care go to: http://oceans.care/

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Britta’s Boat – Photo By Elke Cruiden

Written by Isabel Wijsen

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