On Sunday, July 8th, Plan A organised the first clean-up of its already rich history. With the help of our friends from the German chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and more than 100 volunteers, the Volkspark Friedrichshain received a beautiful Sunday makeover.

We have a better chance of survival if we work together. Our parks are our last urban natural assets. They represent havens of mental and ecological peace in what would otherwise be a concrete jungle. Moreover, they provide shelter for urban animals, whose numbers are growing daily due to habitat loss and land-use change in the countryside.

Our parks deserve to be sanctuaries free of pollution and trash. Quite frankly, everybody should do a clean-up once in their life. To give back, yes, but more importantly to understand the size of the trash problem. In 2 hours, we picked up a few thousand cigarette butts, beer bottle caps and 40 bags worth of miscellaneous trash. Two hours, 40 bags…

That makes you think of the quantity of rubbish out there, but also about the possibility of change. Seeing young children ask us what we were all doing (“Was machst du?”) and then sprinting back and forth to help us out.

Celebration in action is something we can all get behind. If we are able to bring out the fun and beauty of the sustainable transition, rather than the doomsday gloom, we will have won this battle. Our friend and sustainable artist Mona Lüders was here to collect some of the plastic rubbish the crew picked up. In less time that it takes to write it, she had already gathered all she needed to create her piece “Windows of Consumption” that you can see below. The piece will be exposed in the Volkspark for the month.

What else? We got free delicious beers from Brlo, refreshments from Bionade and Leogant‘s supercool water bottles. Partnering up with dedicated and convinced partners gives us hope that individuals, businesses and organisations can come together for a common objective: save the planet and change the way we live on it. Stay tuned for more, and subscribe to our newsletter on PlanA.Earth!

All pictures courtesy of Surfrider Foundation Germany. We love you, you’re amazing.