Jake Sculthorp- Environment activist and team mate
It has been so good to have a new face in the hub and working for the WSL. For a while now, we have fostered a dream of starting a second base. New stock, new location and new possibilities. The Broadstone Leisure centre have now offered us the chance to move into a spare room there in May/June but the real question is, who could run it? Well, we are delighted to say that Jake Sculthorp, a passionate environmentalist from Oceans to Earth has taken on the challenge... and we couldn't be more pleased.
Above: Jake with partner Rosie.
So Jake, tell us about yourself
Where to start... I'm a 38 year old father of 3 beautiful children who certainly keep me busy and on my toes.
I was lucky enough to grow up among the rolling hills of Somerset, I enjoyed a childhood filled with jumping in muddy puddles, den building, walking what seemed hundreds of miles to friend’s houses, and all the other things a child of the 80's/90's would enjoy.
My love of a long walk is still very much a part of my life, being out on the water either kayaking or in a boat, and as a passionate mountain biker, have been known to throw myself down the side of a few mountains. Basically, anything outdoors and I'm a very happy man.
Why did you apply to work with the Watersports Library?
I have always felt very inspired by the Watersports Library's aims. We all heard it as children and still say it to our own, 'sharing is caring'. It seems to be something we don’t do much of as adults, yet makes total sense on so many levels.
This isn't a marketing pitch I promise, but I believe that the Watersports Library addresses many key issues within modern society. We consume too much, so by sharing something that already exists, we're preventing another one being manufactured or purchased. This of course in turn saves on a raft of other processes along the chain that can be detrimental to the environment.
It's also brilliant that it's so accessible to anyone within the community, and we all know the benefits of nature on our mental and physical wellbeing. What's not to love?
Above all I believe in the Watersports Library's ethos, and it is a real privilege to be a part of its growth.
You have a huge passion for the environment don't you. How did all that come about?
I have always felt very connected to nature. Even at the age of 9 I would knock on doors waving fox hunting petitions under people’s noses. But I think there's a time in everyone's life we forget, or may be neglect that connection.
Shortly after moving to Dorset in 2015, I was to be reminded of my connection though. I always remember visiting the incredible beaches along the Jurassic Coast up until I was in my late teens, just before I went off to university, and I don't remember there ever being an abundance of waste washing in on virtually every wave...
I'd never visited Chapman's Pool before, so being new to the area, my partner took me to her favourite place, and I could see why. But the first thing that hit me, was the shear amount of plastic littering the bay, I was truly horrified and, in all honesty, it made me feel sick to the core! This was made even worse by the fact I was heavily involved in working with plastic, so left me questioning my own choices. That moment had a pretty profound effect on my life.
You run your own business too. Tell us about it.
After my visit to Chapman's, there was no way I could stand by and not do anything, so my partner and I set up what is now Oceans to Earth CIC, based in Poole, Dorset.
We began with a focus on ocean plastics, but as with any journey in life, it tends to evolve. Not to lower the tone, but ocean pollution sadly isn’t the only environmental issue we face. So, we wanted to build something that had the capacity to tackle a multitude of issues, whilst working closely with the community and other organisations.
We host regular litter picks, provide educational resources, conduct research projects, and work with local businesses to help them reduce their plastics use. We can even point you towards our partners if you’d like to plant a tree here in the UK or over in Kenya.
The community will always be at the heart of Oceans to Earth though, this is where it all happens.
How can people get involved with what you do?
If you'd like to find out more on what we do or how you can get involved, head over to oceanstoearth.com
But even if you don't have the time to get involved with us personally, as an individual, there are a number of things we can all do to help. Even if you change your toothbrush to a bamboo toothbrush, try a plastic free month or even week, find your local litter picking group or just pick anything up you see whilst out walking, you are helping.
It's amazing how simple changes can have a huge impact, imagine if everyone did just one thing. And trust me when I say this, it will have a domino effect.