Ohelo | Giving Back
Saying Ohelo to Surfers Against Sewage
As a family run brand, we founded Ohelo to try and inspire people to abandon single use options for a more stylish, sustainable option. We wanted to create a business that had a positive impact on the world around us.
We know that giving is not just for Christmas. On founding Ohelo we made giving back part of the very fabric of our company.
Now 2020 definitely has not gone to plan for any of us. Like millions of other small UK businesses, we received no financial support to help us through this year. It has been a rough ride. Despite this we have held true to our ethos and supported some great causes, showing some support to charitable organisations which have also had a really tough year.
We are a proud member of Surfers Against Sewage 250 club, supporting them in their fight to clean up our seas and fight against plastic pollution. We spoke with Jacey over at SAS HQ to get the scoop on everything they are doing:
Hi Jacey, so how do you explain what SAS does to people who are just discovering your charity?
We love our oceans and would like to see them better protected for the future for everyone. Surfers Against Sewage doesn’t exactly describe everything that we do anymore. We’ve made, and continue to make, progress campaigning for safe and cleaner water, whether that’s the on beach, rivers or the ocean. But we also focus on plastic pollution and are working to tackle climate change too, which the ocean plays a massive part in.
What would you say SAS main activities are in a nutshell?
We lobby the Government on water quality issues, organise nationwide beach cleaning events every year, and support communities, businesses and schools who want to cut their single-use plastic consumption through our Plastic Free Communities and Plastic Free Schools programmes.
How has 2020 impacted SAS as a charity?
It’s been a challenging year for SAS, as it has been for everyone. As a lot of our work calls on volunteers, we’ve had to make significant changes to our plans so that people can take part safely whilst still making an impact. The team at HQ, our Reps and community leaders around the country have been amazing and adapted quickly to the challenges that 2020 has thrown at us. Despite everything, we’re ending the year really positively.
What have you still been able to carry on with through 2020?
Lots! We’ve had many supporters taking part in Isolation Cleans and joining our recent Plastic Protest. We’ve also very recently handed in our End Sewage Pollution petition which gathered 45,000 signatures calling for the government to guarantee safe seas and rivers all year round. Because of that pressure, the motion now has backing from almost 100 MPs who will support the Sewage (Inland) Bill when it’s tabled in Parliament early next year. That’s a huge win for us. We were also able to adapt our Ocean School education programme to deliver a series of Digital Ocean School lessons to thousands of school kids across the UK over the summer and again, more recently, with our Pupil Power Assembly. Safe to say, despite the challenges we’ve faced, it’s still been a really busy year for SAS!
What do you have planned for next year?
Next year we want to be bigger and better! Increasing involvement in our campaign activations and developing our Plastic Free programmes across the board.
How can people get involved with SAS?
From joining a beach clean, donating, or even becoming a Rep, there are so many ways to get involved, the best thing to do is take a look at our website to see what opportunities you’d most like to get involved with, or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
How do the SAS gang relax after fighting for cleaner seas all day? (we are guessing surfing is high up on this list!)
Of course! Surfing is high up on the list for most of us. The beach is where you’ll find us in our downtime, whether it’s surfing, swimming, paddleboarding or just walking the dog.