The African Youth Waste Network, project of Sustainable Seas Trust, organised a fun and interactive event on the 23rd April 2019. Eight schools were invited to have a fun filled afternoon at SANCCOB Seabird Rehabilitation Centre learning about environmental education and participating in the BOATS Mobile Application Game Tournament, developed by Prof Gean Greyling.
BOATS is a mobile game which seeks to educate its players on the challenges of plastics in the ocean and equally introducing the players to the basic science of computer coding. The aim of the game is to remove plastic pieces as you navigate your boat in a grid representing the ocean. Extra points are scored by answering plastic pollution questions correctly. The eight schools competed against one another in the tournament, with the winning team being awarded a prize of R2 500.
After learning about plastic pollution, ocean conservation and the African penguin and other seabirds found around the Nelson Mandela Bay Coastline, the tournament began. Crouching around the provided mobile phones with BOATS displayed, excited whispering filled the room as the children moved their tokens around, navigating their boats and discussing the questions. Time was ticking, and the tournament would soon reveal a winner. It was a close tie, with Ilinge Primary School taking the win for the day.
The tournament was presented through the collaboration of Sustainable Seas Trust, BOATS, Nelson Mandela University, SANCCOB, and Captain Fanplastic. The focus of the event was to create awareness, educate and motivate the Youth to take initiative in driving the battle against plastic pollution.
“We are surrounded by plastic, and plastic pollution affects everyone and everything. The event will emphasise the detrimental impact of plastic pollution on our environment and how the youth have the power, energy and bright ideas to help find solutions to this problem, through both art and science,” said Alexie Kalinga, Head of the African Youth Waste Network, project of SST.