Find out how changemaker Natalie Fee, who is behind award-winning campaigning organisation City to Sea, decided to stop marine plastic pollution at the source!
The power of storytelling to inspire action
“I lived in a city, I didn’t swim, sail or surf. I’m not a marine biologist, scientist or explorer and I rarely visited the coastline. But five years ago, I came across Albatross, a documentary made by artist Chris Jordan. And it changed my life. I decided to do whatever I could to stop the suffering plastic pollution inflicts on marine wildlife. When I started out with a crowdfunding campaign for a music video in 2014, I had no idea I would end up leading a team of 21 awesome staff, running award-winning campaigns, and stopping hundreds of tonnes of plastic from being produced each year!”
Award-winning campaigns for a plastic-free future
“Our City to Sea initiatives empower individuals to make a difference in their communities, encourage corporates and retailers to pioneer plastic-free alternatives, and pressure government to adopt new legislation. We’re behind the Refill campaign (Best Behaviour Change winner, Global Good Awards 2018), making refilling on the go easy, fun and rewarding. We launched the world’s first National Refill Day last year and reached over 35 million people – something we’re really proud of! One day, I hope people will think of Refill as the TripAdvisor of tap water, as an initiative that pioneered a refill revolution and made the world ditch single-use plastic bottles with a smile and can-do attitude!”
Advice for budding changemakers
“If I could give you anything, it would be a sense of excitement about your power to change the world! I’m not suggesting you all become environmental campaigners, but I am encouraging you to become ambassadors for nature. Artists, engineers, lawyers, scientists, “no idea what’s next”-ers: make nature one of your key stakeholders, one of your clients, one of your mentors, one of your prominent board members! You can do what you love and what you’re brilliant at while creating a future that sustains and supports all life on Earth.”
Are you a higher vocational or university student graduating on the topic of plastic waste or clean water? Sign up for the Dopper Changemaker Challenge by 12 April! You could win a research grant to boost your final Bachelor or Master’s project!
More about changemaker Natalie
Natalie Fee is an award-winning environmentalist, author, speaker and founder of City to Sea, a UK-based organisation running campaigns to stop plastic pollution at source. In 2018 Natalie was listed as one of the UK’s ‘50 New Radicals’ by The Observer / Nesta and in the same year the University of the West of England awarded her the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science in recognition of her campaign work. She won the Sheila McKechnie Award for Environmental Justice in 2017 for City to Sea’s #SwitchtheStick campaign and was named Bristol 24/7’s Woman of the Year for 2018.