Action Nan Cleans 52 Beaches In One Year In “Final Straw” Campaign Against Single-Use Plastic

If you don’t believe that one person can make a huge difference, meet Pat Smith, a 70-year-old British grandma, who is fighting the good fight against single-use plastic.


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Known as “Action Nan,” Pat launched the FInal Straw campaign with the aim of making Cornwall in the UK the first plastic straw-free county in the UK. The name of the campaign is inspired by the fact that every straw made and used will outlive each and every one of us.

Pat was driven to action after watching a documentary on plastic pollution. In her own words. “It’s hard not to feel really quite depressed about it all. I don’t want to see that turtle with a straw up its nose. I don’t want to see a seal with its neck cut round by a fishing net. I don’t want to see these things happening to our wildlife, to the natural beautiful planet we live on.

She was profoundly disturbed by the single-use plastic problem, so she set a goal to do something about it. She would clean one beach of garbage every week for a year. Her activism work through the Final Straw campaign saw 600 local businesses stop using unnecessary plastic also.

If you want to support “Action Nan” on her one-woman mission against single-use plastic, visit her on her Facebook page.

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(c) Samantha Wilson 2020. All Rights Reserved.

Samantha is a Writer, Earth Activist and Camino de Santiago guide. She inspires her tribe of women to grow wilder and bolder with her tales of adventures, lessons learnt along the way and general musings on life.
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