You can’t go on social media without seeing ads from companies like 4Ocean and Ocean Helper and others, something about how buying a bracelet, or wearing a bracelet, is going to clean up the ocean. Some of them, like 4Ocean, are set up as for-profit schemes, and while it seems that they do collect debris, they are also highly interested in the plastic in your wallet. If you send them $20, you’ll get a bracelet and the promise that your money will go to remove a pound of debris. (Prime rib sells for significantly less, just saying.) There will be a large profit, that’s the whole point. The cute diving dog on their video, the incredibly annoying blue logo shirts, hats, boats, and trash bags, even the bracelets themselves, are all distractions.
But at least the urge to grab the cash right up front is pretty straightforward, especially compared to some other players. There are organizations who will “give” you a bracelet if you send in a “donation.” They will not actually use your donation to clean up any beaches, but they will be happy to forward a portion of it to a different organization, and they will then use it for that purpose. Maybe. Responsibilities are vague. The overhead on all of these bracelets look to be about 8 cents each, so there is a lot of financial wiggle room as well… all I’m saying is that the beach might be cleaner, but there is a rotten smell around here somewhere.
Still, the bracelet idea seems like a good one. I figured I’d give it a shot. I just need to sell one – which is good because I only made one – that’s it at the top of the post. The money raised will fund the Ikkatsu Project’s cleaning of wilderness beaches in Washington and Alaska for the whole year of 2019. For a single tax-free gift of $40,000, this beautiful bracelet, made entirely from debris collected on wild Northwest beaches, can be yours. One of a kind! Hand-made in USA! (The social media posts practically write themselves.)
Totally worth a shot.