Get involved and join the global effort for the International Coastal Cleanup 2023

Marine debris, particularly plastic ocean is negatively impacting our marine life all around the world, including in Vanuatu. Cleaning up our beaches and coastlines can help, but documenting what we find to demonstrate the scale of the problem can help change people’s thinking and change policy. Both on a global scale, such as the commitment countries made to have a global treaty on plastics earlier this year, and  at a local level, as happened with the introduction of the single-use plastics bans that came into effect a few years ago here in Vanuatu. 

Since VESS started in 2014, we have conducted cleanups, with the help of our concerned volunteers, and collected data on what are the most problematic items and how much rubbish is accumulating on our beaches and coastline. 

How can you help? Organise your own cleanup in your area any time in September or join ours.

What is the ICC?

For decades, volunteers with Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup have removed millions of kilograms of rubbish from our oceans, beaches and waterways every year in September.  They not only pick up trash, they count every item as well. The resulting item-by-item, location-by-location Ocean Trash Index provides the only global snapshot of the ocean debris littering the world’s coasts and waterways. VESS works with the ICC team from the Ocean Conservancy and has been the country coordinator for Vanuatu for the last 6 years. 

How to join the VESS cleanup

1) register with VESS by emailing:

2) Meet on Ifiria Point beach, outside the boat yard at 9:00 am on Thursday 14th September

3) Bring a clipboard, a pencil, reusable gloves and a smile 

How to organise your own cleanup

1). Get a team together – the team can be any size from one to hundreds! 

2). Download your litter data sheets in English, Bislama or French here or download the Clean Swell app from the Apple Store or Google Play store. 

3) Collect the rubbish lying on the beach, street or on the ground close to the sea or waterways (rivers or drains).

4) Count the rubbish and add the information about what you collect to the data sheet or enter it into the Clean Swell app

5) Dispose of the rubbish you collected in the appropriate place

6) If you are using our paper data sheets, when you have finished add up the tally from all the data sheets you used on to one fresh  new data sheet and send it to VESS via email or post to our facebook page Don’t forget to fill in all the details about how many people were in your group, how long your cleanup was and where your cleanup are was.  If you are using the Clean Swell app your tallies will have already been uploaded to the global database, TIDES.

We will add any data sent to us to the TIDES database so you will be able to see online the results of your efforts. 

Find out more about the at the Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas website

And for more info on the Clean Swell app see the poster below