From UN Environment to Aga Khan Pavilion - Flipflopi has had a Busy April

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April 14th: From UNEP to Aga Khan

Flipflopi Team member, Victor Beguerie has been fundraising, organising photo exhibitions in France and helping move Flipflopi across Nairobi - it’s been a busy and exciting #plasticrevolution month!

After having spent more than one month at UNEP Headquarters, the Flipflopi continued her journey in Nairobi to the Aga Khan Pavilion. The Aga Khan community invited the boat to be the central exhibit at the Ismaili Economic Forum held in Nairobi from the 26th to the 28th of April. The forum sought to increase collaboration among Ismaili entrepreneurs, strategic business alliances, Jamati institutions, and AKDN institutions, through plenary expert speakers, panel discussions, and exhibitions.

 Inspired by Flipflopi, this forum was set to be fully circular - 100% plastic free with all waste recycled!

 The moving day was set for the 14th of April.

 On this cloudy Sunday morning, Dipesh, Ali, Leonard and I gathered to accompany the Flipflopi on her perilous urban journey.

 First challenge, entering UNEP on a Sunday morning...

 At least, it was easier for the crane crew who were already inside when we arrived.

 Second challenge, removing the mast...

 The mast is set up to the deck of the boat inclined at a specific angle. It needs to be removed at the same angle to avoid breaking the deck. After a few attempts, the mast was safely released from the deck in front of our anxious eyes.

It was now time for the Flipflopi to show her aerodynamic skills.

 The urban journey could finally start…

Third challenge, avoiding the electric cables and the tree branches over the road...

Armed with two sticks, two crane crew members were ready to warn and overcome the obstacles along the 6.6 km of the journey. And they were numerous!

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The Flipflopi finally arrived at the Aga Khan Pavilion where the Ismaili community and a walking band warmly welcomed her.

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After another tour in the air with the crane, the Flipflopi arrived safely at its new podium. With the help and enthusiasm of all the kids, the blue plastic bottle ocean was recreated in a few minutes.

April 17th, 2019: Aga Khan Community Meeting

As the sun set and the night blanketed the sky, Flipflopi’s sail rose high…

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Illuminated by the bright blue lights and blown gently by the light breeze, our beautiful dhow was definitely the star of the evening.

 Eager children clambered up on her, their parents gasping at its brightly hued exterior in wonder.

 ”It’s really spongy, just like flip flops.”

 The evening of April 17th saw over 100 people gathered at the Aga Khan Pavilion for a community meeting.

 As a tangible solution of what a circular economy could look like, the Flipflopi team was present at the meeting to discuss the importance of the circular economy; what it is and how we can play a part in shifting towards it and away from the linear economy.

 Captain Ali Skanda narrated how the problem of marine plastic pollution compelled him to build the Flipflopi. “The dhow was the first point of communication...it connected all the continents. Today, we are using the dhow to communicate the urgent issue of marine plastic pollution.”

Flipflopi Project Co-Founder, Dipesh Pabari also spoke on a panel on “Disrupting the Status Quo: Experiences and Opportunities in the Circular Economy,” where he stressed the necessity of switching away from single-use plastics and encouraged the people present to embrace a circular economy.  

 After fruitful engagements with the Ismaili community, Flipflopi will remain at the Aga Khan Pavilion for a month, open to the public. The Aga Khan network is arranging school visits alongside other activities to generate increased public awareness about single-use plastic.

 Thanks to you, 665 € has been gathered so far on the crowdfunding campaign of the CERDI Alumni. A huge thank you for that!

 Keep on donating on the link below:

https://www.helloasso.com/associations/cerdi-alumni/collectes/fliflopi

 See you soon for other adventures!