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Flip-Flop Sculpture Draws Attention to Marine Debris Issue

Aug. 29/11

It makes a strong visual statement about the state of our oceans.

Dipesh Pabari, Camps International, Africa

As we prepare to kick-off Debris Month of Action underwater on September 1, we're inspired by this incredible beach cleanup project that’s become a striking piece of marine debris art thanks to Camps International in Africa.


In Kenya, Camps International runs beach cleanups and creates artwork from the collected debris. This year, staff and volunteers collected enough plastic flip-flops to create a giant sea turtle. It took a thousand flip-flops to make the turtle, which is now mounted in central Diani on the south coast of Kenya. Unbelievably, they collected at least 5,000 flip-flops from a two kilometer stretch of beach in just four weeks.

Here's how they did it:

Staff and volunteers collected thousands of flip-flops from the beach:


Then created the remarkable piece of art:


And prepared the sculpture for display:


The flip-flop turtle helps to raise awareness of the serious problem of marine debris.


“We have been doing this for quite a few years now as we believe it not only makes such a strong visual statement about the state of our oceans but also we hope that many local artisans will be inspired to turn their skills to craft work made from flip-flops, which tourists will purchase and also think twice before dropping a bottle on the beach or leaving their flip-flops behind,” said Dipesh Pabari from Camps International in Africa.

You can learn more about the Camps International flip flop turtle project here.

Inspired to organize your own debris art project? Start by Diving Against Debris, a new Project AWARE program that combines underwater cleanup dives with critical debris data submission. Organize your Dive Against Debris today.