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  • Writer's pictureWildlife Friendly Otley

Cash from ocean trash benefits Otley wildlife charity

A donation of £1300 raised by collecting trash from the Atlantic ocean around the beautiful islands of Bermuda has been made to local charity Wildlife Friendly Otley.

The trash is collected by Bermuda residents Karen Plianthos and her mother, Louise Jones, who are activists who dive off the coast of Bermuda to collect trash from the ocean, deliver it for recycling or incineration while raising money for charities.

Under her Cash Trash Bash scheme, Karen challenges supporters to sponsor her efforts, and over the duration of the collections, many tons of rubbish have been retrieved from the ocean and many local and international charities have benefitted. In 5 years of diving the scheme had collected over 12,000 lbs of rubbish and raised thousands of pounds.

Karen has led several hugely successful projects, along with volunteers, and this year, Wildlife Friendly Otley is the fortunate recipient of their efforts. Karen’s friend, Michelle Howard is an Otley resident and keen supporter of Wildlife Friendly Otley and it was at her suggestion that Karen donated the money from their latest trash collection.

River Six, secretary and trustee of Wildlife Friendly Otley said: “Karen’s family are all involved in the ocean clean-up for cash, and they came to Otley to present us with this kind and generous donation, which will go towards several projects to benefit our local wildlife and biodiversity.

“This is a huge win for Otley’s wildlife, as well as a win for seas around Bermuda. Actions such as this really give us hope that our biodiversity, both here and abroad, can thrive and be protected. We are hugely grateful to Karen and Michelle who suggested Wildlife Friendly Otley as a recipient this year.”
“Rubbish, especially plastic, is a worldwide pollution problem in our rivers, seas and oceans.” added River. “It is greatly encouraging that people like Karen and Louise who love their natural environment, in this case the sea, are tackling one problem, trash in the sea and at the same time turning trash into cash to benefit wildlife elsewhere; in this case 6000 miles away in Otley.”

Karen Plianthos, a keen free diver who can hold her breath for two minutes and dive to 60 feet, and her volunteers salvaged over 2000lbs of trash so far this year from 25 dives.

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