In the second half of her Indian odyssey, Karen Sutton, Founder and CEO of the National CSR Awards, describes how a trip to a beautiful beach opened her eyes to the full horrors of ocean waste.
“After leaving Mumbai, I headed south to Goa to celebrate a milestone birthday and was planning on ‘switching off’. Except, when I got there, I couldn’t help but be alerted to the amount of plastic that was not only already floating along in the ocean, but the waste that was being thrown on the beaches, out of car windows and straight into the sea.
“I was staying at the Taj Vivanta, a beautiful holiday village on the Candolim coast, but as soon as you headed down to the beach, the rubbish was hard to avoid.
“My most shocking moment came when out on a boat trip to Grande Island. We were taken by a small petrol powered boat, and other than my party of three, everyone else were locals. Once on the island, we were offered cold drinks from a big crate full of drinks in ice… but the locals, once finished with their bottles, discarded them straight into the sea, on the beach or the rocks – wherever they happened to be standing – without a second thought! In horror, I approached the tour guides that controlled the boats, asking them if they knew how bad it was for their paying guests to do such a thing and asked whether their Prime Minister’s awareness campaign, #MyCleanIndia was getting through. They said they’d not even heard of it .”
This experience has given Karen a real desire to make change happen. She is now seeking support and funding from corporate sponsors to enable her to return to India – during the awards ‘off season’ – to actively support the Indian PM’s campaign and raise awareness throughout hotel chains in Goa.
Karen is also looking to work with a social enterprise to help shape the programme.
If you, or your business, is interested in supporting Karen on her mission, get in touch directly on 07813 718541.