Windseeker x BTOWU

Intercultural Youth Exchange expeditions around Europe: sailing the plastic soup

Windseeker x BTOWU

Windseeker and By the Ocean we Unite join forces at sea

Windseeker has been organizing Intercultural Youth Exchange sailing expeditions around Europe supported by Erasmus+ for 15 years now. Thousands of youngsters experienced life at sea, growing interpersonal and leadership skills. Since 2019 By the Ocean we Unite is present on every expedition, providing man and material to conduct research into microplastics and run an on board program on plastic and waste.

The new Clean Circle Navigators program combines learning with adventure. We will sail 4 traditional tall ships in 5 different European countries. On board: Captain and crew, mentors, BTOWU marine researchers and, most importantly: participants (trainees) from different countries. This remarkable mix of people will make a unique experience.

Sailing by itself is an exercise in sustainability: we travel with the power of the wind as much as possible, sort our trash for easier storage, take shorter showers because of a limited fresh water supply. Additionally we observe the sea every day, meeting the animals whose lives depend on the health of marine ecosystems.

Research on microplastics is, of course, an important part of the program, as are brainstorming sessions on how we can all do better to live more sustainable lives every day. In the off time, the Windseeker mentors organize other activities, helping everyone to get to know each other and connect despite differences in backgrounds and languages.

Want to learn more or join the journeys? Check out the Windseeker website!

Some of the journeys are co-financed by the Erasmus+ Program of the European Union. The EU recognizes the educational value of this experience and helps to make the trips more affordable, as well as reimbursing some of the travel costs.

For those who can’t afford the full price, the Windseeker Dinghy online fundraising program has been established. Experienced mentors will help you gather the money for the trip and you will learn useful skills along the way. Check out the Dinghy here.