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Surfers Against Sewage

Originating as a beach cleaning charity in 2012, Surfers Against Sewage has evolved to drive holistic societal change in attitudes toward the environment. They now campaign on government policy, create plastic free urban communities and have a presence in schools, educating future conservationists. The continued loyalty of over 75,000 volunteers is testament to strong leadership from their team and the dedication of regional representatives. Their membership base giving regular donations via subscriptions and a solid fund-raising strategy has won a number of multi year grants, which is significant in moving toward their target of 50% reduction in UK beach litter and plastic pollution by 2022.
Impact analysis Volunteering efforts to recycle plastic pollution from beaches meant a decrease in spending per tonne to £10,847, compared to £12,079 in 2016-17. Growth in core outcomes is the basis for their positive impacts in other areas including the engagement with parliament that saw a reduction of plastic use in Westminster and their movement into urban communities, spreading their message inland.
What it does
  • Surfers Against Sewage is a national marine conservation and campaigning charity that inspires, unites and empowers communities to take action to protect oceans, beaches, waves and wildlife
Who works here
  • 19 employees and 75000 volunteers.
Who it helps
  • The General Public/mankind
Sector(s) covered
  • Education/training
  • Environment/conservation/heritage
Where it operates
  • Throughout England And Wales, Scotland
UN SDGs:
?
Awards received

Over the last three years they've won the following awards:

  • Charity Awards 2018 Environment & Conservation Charity
Financial Data ?
Y/E Income Expenditure Surplus/
Deficit
Assets Months
Reserves
Employees Volunteers Filed on
31/12/2018 £1,520,168 £1,258,298 £261,870 8 19 75000 21/08/2019
31/12/2017 £1,171,687 £946,264 £225,423 £501,000 5 12 35000 30/10/2018
31/12/2016 £1,009,846 £949,408 £60,438 £275,567 3 13 25000 16/08/2017
31/12/2015 £943,321 £909,419 £33,902 £215,127 2 11 4000 09/09/2016
31/12/2014 £816,514 £797,489 £19,025 £181,225 2 11 4000 07/09/2015
31/12/2013 £641,029 £634,749 £6,280 £162,200 2 9 3763 11/09/2014
31/12/2012 £514,046 £531,142 -£17,096 £155,920 3 9 3187 29/08/2013
Donations received ?

Over the last five years they've received significant donations from 3 grant making charities totalling £305,200

Amount/
When
Donor To be used for
£15,200
26/03/2020
The EQ Foundation
£200,000
31/08/2018
Esmee Fairbairn Towards Plastic Free Communities, an initiative designed to unite and empower individuals, businesses, local government and community groups to reducing their collective plastic footprint.
£90,000
31/03/2018
Garfield Weston Foundation Surfers Against Sewage - Regional Representative Project
How effective is it?
Beach Cleans Programme

Description: The programme creates volunteering opportunities in large scale beach cleans across the country, with regional representatives helping to co-ordinate the cleans.

Objectives: To educate, promote and protect the marine environment including associated land, shoreline and structures

Intervention period: Throughout the year activities are set up from day events to weekly learning opportunities

Beneficiaries: Communities throughout the UK

Outputs Outcomes
01/01/2018-31/12/2018
1611 Beach cleans organised
68200 Beach clean volunteers116 Tonnes of plastic pollution and marine litter removed from beaches
168 Regional representatives leading volunteering efforts
01/01/2017-31/12/2017
34779 Beach clean volunteers97.2 Tonnes of plastic pollution and marine litter removed from beaches
1393 Beach cleans organised
135 Regional representatives leading volunteering efforts
02/01/2016-31/12/2016
19491 Beach clean volunteers64 Tonnes of plastic pollution and marine litter removed from beaches
946 Beach cleans organised
125 Regional representatives leading volunteering efforts
01/01/2015-31/12/2015
12000+ Beach clean volunteers 46.8 Tonnes of plastic pollution and marine litter removed from beaches
625 Beach cleans organised
75 Regional representatives leading volunteering efforts
Educational Programmes

Description: Through a mix of educational talks in urban areas, outdoor summer camps and pupil led education designed to create positive change in UK schools, the programmes engage pupils and help increase awareness and promote single-use plastic free environments

Objectives: To equip, empower and inspire the next generation of ocean and inland conservationists

Beneficiaries: School children and their communities

Outputs Outcomes
01/01/2018-31/12/2018
11620 Pupils directly engaged
180 Schools visited165 School talks delivered
217 Schools working toward going single-use plastic free17 Accredited single-use plastic free schools
700 Letters written by children to MPs making them aware of the plastic waste issue Former Education Secretary Damian Hinds MP set a target for all schools to be single-use plastic-free by 2022
50 School visits7540 Pupils worked with
01/01/2017-31/12/2017
132 Schools visited12179 Pupils given school talks
Plastic Free Communities Programme

Description: Campaigning within communities and in the media through newspapers, TV and radio mentions, and social media to build awareness of plastic waste

Objectives: To unite communities in the fight against single-use plastics

Beneficiaries: Communities throughout the UK

Outputs Outcomes
01/01/2018-31/12/2018
359 Communities working towards going single-use plastic free33 Communities accredited with plastic free status
(A community being accredited with plastic free status meaning they have demonstrated they worked with their local councils to pass a motion which commits their councils to reduce single use plastic in the whole of their jurisdiction)
403 Plastic free community leaders
626 Plastic Free Business Champions
(A Plastic Free Business Champion is accredited when they have demonstrated they have removed or replaced more than 3 items of single use plastic and are reviewing their use of all single-use plastics)
690 Newspaper and print mentions
1143 UK and Ireland broadcast mentions
Water Quality - Safer Seas Service

Description: A national free real-time water quality service covering beaches in England and Wales. Accessed via an online interactive map, 7 coastal water companies provide free Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) data to monitor water quality

Objectives: To protect the marine environment including associated land, shoreline and structures

Beneficiaries: Communities throughout the UK

Outputs Outcomes
01/01/2018-31/12/2018
330 Beaches covered by the Safer Seas Service
916 Combined Sewer Overflow alerts via the Safer Seas Service
1638 Pollution Risk Forecast warnings issued
01/01/2017-31/12/2017
330 Beaches covered by the Safer Seas Service
2867 Pollution Risk Forecast warnings issued
1605 Combined Sewer Overflow alerts via the Safer Seas Service
All-Party Parliamentary Group

Description: Using the parliamentary presence to facilitate dialogue from those working in the ocean sector, campaigning and publishing documents to promote plastic free parliament engagement.

Objectives: To raise serious environmental threats and marine conservation campaigns directly with politicians and senior civil servants

Beneficiaries: Communities throughout the UK

Outputs Outcomes
01/01/2018-31/12/2018
37 Members of Parliament as part of the All-Party Parliamentary Group
330000 Supporters signed a petition calling for a single-use bottle deposit scheme
7500 Members of the public who wrote to their local MP
01/01/2017-31/12/2017
270000 Supporters signed a petition calling for a Deposit Return System for beverage containers in England
Check what you could achieve with a donation of: £
Management
Hugo Tagholm is CEO and has been with SAS for 10 years, moving from being as activist to regional rep and trustee before taking up his current post. He has been instrumental in the transformation of the charity, instrumental in organisation growth and campaigning to put SAS at the forefront of the UK environmental movement. SAS are currently recruiting a Head of Campaigns and Chief Operations Officer. The recruitment of a COO was driven by the expectation that increased demand will be required of the CEO position in future expansions. This shift of workload will be supported by the Head of Campaigns overseeing delivery team operations. The large number of volunteers SAS work with mean they require the help of regional representatives (who are also volunteers) to co-ordinate its beach cleans, local campaign action, policy and scientific report advice. In 2018-19 there were 175 total regional reps (guided by SAS staff) who provided help with recruitment of additional volunteers and co-ordination of activities in their local areas.
Governance
Trustees (11)
  • Lesley Kazan-Pinfield
  • Chris Hides
  • Alex Wade
  • Lauren Davies
  • Peter Crane
  • Jon Khoo
  • Dr Heather Jane Koldewey
  • Ben Suffell
  • Richard Malcolm Walker
  • Lucy Danielle Siegle
  • Christian John Hugo
Main office

UNIT 2 WHEAL KITTY WORKSHOPS
WHEAL KITTY
ST. AGNES
CORNWALL
TR5 0RD

Legal constitution
  • UK Charity, number: 1145877
  • First registered on 13/02/2012
Objectives

TO UNDERTAKE AND PROMOTE FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE PUBLIC THE CONSERVATION, PROTECTION, IMPROVEMENT AND ECOLOGICALLY SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT OF THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT INCLUDING ASSOCIATED LAND, SHORELINE AND STRUCTURES. TO ADVANCE THE EDUCATION OF THE PUBLIC IN THE CONSERVATION, PROTECTION, IMPROVEMENT AND ECOLOGICALLY SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT OF THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT INCLUDING ASSOCIATED LAND, SHORELINE AND STRUCTURES.

In 2018-19, Ben Suffell was appointed as Chair. He is the founder and managing director of QTS Fundraising and is a founding member of The Olive Network, a fledgling online community designed to curate humanitarianism by encouraging charities, NGO’s and individuals to collaborate. In addition, SAS have announced the appointment of Richard Walker, Managing Director of the Iceland Foods Group and Lucy Siegle, journalist, television presenter and author of 'Turning the Tide on Plastic' as Trustees. They are leaders in progressive environmental action and awareness in the business, fashion and media sectors., having recently worked with SAS to progress plastic-free campaigns, inspire volunteers and promote the protection of oceans, rivers and beaches.