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“Plastics, plastics, and more plastics” by Sira López

Sira López has a degree in Marine Sciences and an expert from Aych. He currently works as a manager of the Cíes Volunteering Field where Free Plastics activities are carried out.

Plastics, plastics, and more plastics. Look to your right. Now to your left. And now head on. It seems impossible not to see plastics wherever we look up. And we have begun to use this material in such a massive way that it is everywhere. But, being honest, the truth is that they are very comfortable. They do not weigh. It Does not Break. They are cheap … They seem all advantages. But unfortunately, in this story, there is a B face. And we don’t make responsible use of them. We generate tons and tons of plastic waste annually. Most of them end up in landfills, where they are incinerated. Some, the least, recycled, usually in third world countries. And, more and more plastics are accumulating in the oceans, the true lungs of the planet, since this is where most of the oxygen we breathe is generated. Plastics spend hundreds of years in our seas until they degrade completely. During this process, they break into smaller and smaller pieces. So small that they are practically imperceptible to the human eye. They are the microplastics. But these microplastics can also come from cosmetic products, such as scrubs, going directly to wastewater, so that it is impossible to treat them in a treatment plant due to their tiny size. And although they are not seen, they are fatal. For a while now, plastics are appearing in the most unexpected places. Not only are they in the stomach of fish, but they have also appeared in table salt, in tap water or in honey. Without us noticing, they have become part of the food chain, incorporating into living beings the toxicity that everything derived from oil entails. And the long-term effects that they can carry are not yet well known. Alarms about this problem have jumped worldwide and, fortunately, more and more countries are deciding to ban the use of single-use plastics.

For some years, young people from all over Europe flood the Terrestrial Maritime National Park of the Atlantic Islands of Galicia. But, unlike the ordinary visitors who receive the islands, we want to talk about people who come with a clear idea: to contribute their grain of sand to make this dream place a little better place. They are part of Pink-Power, a group of volunteers who decide to spend part of their summer in the Cíes Islands doing multiple tasks in coordination with the park staff. His work is focused on the environment, highlighting the cleanliness of beaches, awareness of the citizenship or the proposal of prototypes that help replace the plastic of our daily life or eliminate it from our environment. Thus, through the cleaning of beaches, they not only systematically collect the garbage that reaches our beaches, but also identify and quantify it, transferring this data to the Ministry of Environment through its Citizen Science program. With the help of these results, which will be subsequently analysed in more detail, action will be taken accordingly according to the type of waste most frequently found. In this way, the chain of awareness continues. It is no longer simply about eliminating waste from an area. It’s about going further, preventing this from happening, not making the same mistakes again. Seeing the will of the coming generations, it seems that we are on the right track.

João Sousa: new collection

João Sousa, designer installed in the fashion and design incubator of the Santo thyrso factory, in the framework of the AYCH project, continues his professional growth.

The young designer has just released the promotional video of the new campaign, completely recorded in the factory of Santo thyrso.

Here it is.


A new program for the young people of Plymouth will begin on August 3, a varied training offer that is both fun and entertaining.

  • A Mad Science Day.
  • An Introduction to Viral Stories by Rio.
  • An Introduction to AR app design.
  • Microbit Coding!
  • An Introduction to Virtual Reality.
  • Wonder Workshops an introduction to Engineering.
  • An Introdution to creative Digital Animation WorkShops.

This summer, be creative Explore, Lea rn and Make Digital Animations, Virtual Stories, Holograms, Microbit Coding, Virtual Reality (VR), 30 Printing, Fun Engineering and Create your own Augmented Reality (AR) App’s!


All boookings will be vieventbrite

{Co to www.eventbrite.co.uk and search Summer Mix’ )


Involve young people from four European countries through the Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs (AYCH) project of the Interreg Atlantic Area programme in initiatives to conserve the good environmental condition of its beaches. The second is to create educational and informative material, achieving an active and interventive communication of these values with the work of European youth.

To achieve these objectives the project invites all its partners to develop activities for the benefit of the conservation of the seas and oceans with special incidence in the problem of plastic in those fulfilling the commitment that the whole partnership has acquired in relation to the circular economy and on the basis of starting this common project.

This year the objective is to have a “sea of ideas” and for young people from all over Europe to prototype solutions for environmental problems.

The Volunteer Camp of the Cíes Islands of the General Directorate of Xuventude, Participation and Volunteering of the Xunta de Galicia and the National Park of Atlantic Illas of Galicia gathers 120 young people from all over Europe this summer to work in the Cíes Islands.

A wonderful experience for youth throughout Europe.

Soon you will have more news from us.

Space*: reference centres of Aych in Southern England

Space* are the reference centers of Aych in southern England where young people have a wide range of activities to develop in their youth centers.

Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs

We are really excited to announce our involvement in this innovative project. Working with partners across Europe we will
generate creative spaces for young people to come together and use design thinking and key enabling technologies
to generate skills, knowledge, and who knows… maybe change the world!

Each week we’ll be meeting in BidefordExmouth & Tiverton to do things like:
 Build, explore and play with Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Robotics, Coding, Soundscaping & 3D design
 Listen to expert speakers talk about technologies and their experiences in the industry
 Host ‘hands-on’ technical workshops and ‘experience days’ to spark inspiration in modern technologies
 Meet with international partners at least 3 times a year to work up ideas
 Connect young minds with the creative industry for the mutual benefit of both

More info here.

Justine – an entrepreneur in Brest

After the AYCH program, an activity creation!

Justine entered the CAE Chrysalide to develop her activity as a traveling public writer. Bravo!

The EAC, what is it?

“A cooperative of activities and employment accompanies and hosts on the legal, fiscal, social and accounting levels, entrepreneurs who wish to develop an economic activity.It proposes an individual and collective support to the development of the projects, with a status entrepreneur-se-employee is an alternative to individual entrepreneurship. ”

More info

Cleaning in Cortegada – National Park of the Atlantic Islands of Galicia

Next week, we will present to the whole of Europe the objectives of Aych Ocean 2019 the project whose methodology will be developed in the 2019 Cies Field for the collection of garbage and its characterization.

José Fernández Bouzas, director of the National Park of the Atlantic Islands of Galicia, where this activity is carried out, has sent us information about the cleaning they have developed on the Island of Cortegada, belonging to the National Park.

Day of cleaning of beaches and coast rocks with Kayak Club of the Sea of ​​Bueu and Spain Kayak on the island of Cortegada within the framework of Project II Network for the conservation of the ecosystems of the National Park of the Atlantic Islands of Galicia promoted by COBGA, PNMTIAG, Address General of Natural Heritage, Oceanographic of Vigo and Biodiversity Foundation, Pleamar Funds.

145.5 kg of rubbish were collected, specifically 50.7 kg of plastics, 6.3 kg of glass, 16.2 kg of metal, 17.2 mixing dirt, 50 kg of wood and 5 kg of pots.

It should be noted that 1,117 batch plastic sticks were collected, 182 small ears of ears, 36 beams, 10 hunting cartridges. As curiosity, hygiene, gin, 6 liter oil 18 liters of oil and a wheelbarrow appeared.

As we can see, there is a lot of work to do this year.

The Aych Ocean project is an Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs project, Interreg Espacio Atlántico, which also seeks studies on our Atlantic ocean, find solutions to offer society about the protection of the environment and the fight against one’s plastic use from the point of view of European youth.

Aych will be present this year in the Campo de Cíes where he will develop environmental prototype days and his Creative Jam activity attended by experts from all over Europe.

The municipality of Gijón has started its work as we have previously announced in Aych Ocean, and we have been in Exmouth where Space * has shown its interest in carrying out environmental activities this year. In addition Asthon Community Trust in Belfast also wants to know about the Cies Camp project for export to northern Ireland, and Plymouth College of Art will send Luise Honey this summer as her ambassador to participate with us in Cies.

Conversation with Laura Quinn

by Vitaly Volodchenko

Today I spoke with a young woman from Plymouth College Of Arte, Laura, a great lover of her work and to know new experiences

In April of this year, I had the exciting opportunity to travel to the town of Gijón in Northern Spain.  A few weeks prior I had answered the call out from a poster for young designers to take part in a ‘creative jam’ focused towards sustainable design.  My own research revolves around the use of digital design and hand blown glass to make a sustainable artisanal practice. So naturally, this call out caught my attention.  Admittedly I did not know much about the Atlantic Youth Creative Hub who was hosting the event, but nonetheless, I submitted my application and later I received the great news that it had been accepted- time to pack my bags and take a little break from my MA studies!

I arrived at the train station early on the morning we were due to depart, and one by one the whole Plymouth team arrived.  We began the mammoth journey to Gijón via London and Asturias.  The journey allowed a chance for us all to get to know each other- I was incredibly surprised by the diverse range of practices we came from; from illustration to textiles, to product design.

After nearly 15 hours of travel, we arrived at our hotel, right on the seafront in Gijón.  We all agreed that we felt instantly at home here.  The weather was warm but not too hot, and occasionally rainy- what we’re used to.  But more than that, Gijón seemed to remind us all of hometown AYCH hub, Plymouth with its maritime history and town layout, and relaxed seaside mindset.

The AYCH Creative Jam took place on the university campus in Gijón over the next three days with young attendees from Portugal, Spain, France, England and Northern Ireland.  There were a series of workshops on subjects ranging from anthropology to eco design to electronics. Our very own Ben Mundy from Fablab Plymouth facilitated a 3D printing workshop that had a brilliant response- particularly from attendees who wouldn’t normally have access to or experience of a FabLab.

On the final day, with all the new knowledge and skills we had learned, we were randomly allocated to a team and mentor.  During a 6 hour intense ‘hackathon’ each team had to come up with, prototype and create a presentation of an idea. There was great freedom at this point to develop whatever idea we were excited by and believed in.  My own team, influenced greatly by the idea of co-designing and sustainable cities and communities, developed an online platform to allow town members and local authorities a place to design together their shared spaces within their community.

The next stage was a pitch in front of a panel.  12 teams in total pitched, and 6 were selected to present in front of the full audience of attendees, mentors and staff- over 70 people! I was blown away to see how each team reacted to the challenge, and to see the creative responses- an audience interactive virtual reality simulator to bring realities of devastating climate change to our city centres,  and an online community called Seed Link to share agricultural knowledge for home growing fruit and veg, to name a few.

The 3 days spent at the event in Gijón were truly wonderful and path changing for me.  I am so glad to have been offered the opportunity by the AYCH team here at Plymouth College of Art.  As a result, I met and talked to others engaging in exciting sustainable manufacturing research, and I even managed to sell one of my products.

In a few months time, I will be travelling to France to visit two of the AYCH hubs on a residency.  This has allowed me the opportunity to launchpad when I finish my MA studies in September later this year.  Consequently, I hope to take part in an exciting design research residency abroad next year for 4 months- but ssshh I can’t say too much about that yet!

Taking part in this event has reassured me that there is an energetic, and supportive network to travel and work with to continue my research and making practice beyond my studies.

Conversation with Camille Mansuy

by Vitaly Volodchenko

Camille Mansuy is AYCH Ambassador from Brest, France. She finished Brest Business School and now works on developing a project in the field of fashion and textiles.

When did you first time found out about the project?

I found out in February, my sister sent me an email that she received from a professor of my Business School where she was studying too.

Why did you decide to join?

It was a great opportunity for me to find help and share my fears and limits but also expectations with professionals and other people who also had a creative project. It was a chance to confront my project to the reality of the field.

How do you use opportunities that projects offer?

As I said, it’s a great opportunity to find help, in the construction thinking of your project. It’s really helpful when you don’t know how and where to start. It gave me real confidence in what I wanted to do and show me that I was capable of. Through the different steps of the project, we met professionals who were happy to share their experiences but also their network or their know-how.

What did you learn by taking part in the project activities?

The different project activities we had the chance to follow with AYCH bring us a new way of thinking to the obstacles that we can meet on our way, and I think it’s the most important thing for me. If it does not work in the way you imagined, you can always rethink and try again. You always learn from negative situations that can finally be seen as opportunities.

We’ve learned about all the different aspects that an entrepreneurs & freelancers can meet in their professional activities. Sometimes the notions can be difficult to understand but Pauline and Emilie who taught us during the activities have made the things very clear for us.

Finally, always being in a posture of open-mindedness is a key not only for the project but for life in general.

Do you feel the change that the project gave you to?

Yes of course! I really feel that I can accomplish my project thanks to AYCH. Thanks to all the people I’ve met, I am currently working on the first pre-series of my caps! I didn’t think this would happen so fast ! And it’s great.
I would like to thank my teammates, Pauline, Emilie and Gwenaëlle for being so supportive with us!

Conversations with Dr Deborah Robinson

by Oenone Thomas

Deborah[i] is an artist who makes audio-visual installation artwork based on interdisciplinary collaboration. This has included working with biologists, ecologists, biomedical experts, technologists, and specialists in mental health. We initially met on the train as I travelled to Tate Modern in London for the AYCH Tate Exchange Creative Jam and we immediatley realised that the conversation should continue.

Our discussion today was thoughtful, sometimes fast and at other times slow as we considered a diverse range of topics which do not necessarily fit neatly in to a linear piece of writing. It was refreshing to let the conversation take its natural path. This meandering led to:

Young People’s expectations about their lives. Their integration of work and life, their stronger bonds with environmental and global values, their desire for experiences, change and challenge which is at odds with clearly delineated models of work and leisure.

We turned to the magic of the 3.5% behavioural change threshold[ii]. Whether AYCH should think about, debate and perhaps demonstrate through its work how to make behavioural change happen. Thinking here about Florent’s comment about AYCH changing his practice, AYCH Ocean’s impact on the Cíes Islands and some of the campaigns which Young People have presented at our local and transnational Creative Jams. Sometimes the issues we deal with – Climate Change, loss of habitat, mental health etc are overwhelming. How do we overcome being overwhelmed? There is something about scale “think globally, act locally” which has somehow been lost.

Discussions turned to those everyday straplines the permeate our lives. What do they mean and are their messages too human-centric? The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has ‘giving nature a home’. Do we give nature a home? Is it ours to give? Perhaps with our focus on circular economies and sustainable practice AYCH and our Young People could examine our messaging to ‘de-throne the human’ and in doing so enhance behavioural change.

We work in a world of constructs which are not-fit-for-purpose. Where academics work in collaboration across borders but where universities are ranked by research publication which they want to ‘own’ and where products/services/campaigns are co-designed by AYCH transnational teams where Intellectual Property rights and State Aid are complex.  Recognition is due, but are their things that are beyond ownership? AYCH believes there is, and our Wiki demonstrates this but in other ways we are bound by out-dated constructs. Reporting for ACYH is heavily text based, divided and sub-divided until the essence of what we do is lost whereas we could use the Key Enabling Technologies, multimedia and immersive experience to show so much more.

Our conversation briefly turned to the benefit of ‘gaze aversion’[iii] and how our fixation on eye contact might sometimes be misplaced but we had to an end before we could really start. But I hope that we might learn something from one another. For the moment I have promised to send some videos of AYCH, think about opportunities for collaboration and to allow more time for slow meandering conversation.

[i] http://deborah-robinson.net/

[ii] http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20190513-it-only-takes-35-of-people-to-change-the-world

[iii] https://www2.le.ac.uk/departments/npb/people/kbp3/pdf/MarksonPaterson08.pdf