TUI Junior Academy Rhodes

Islands like Rhodes which have a thriving tourism industry also face significant environmental problems from single-use plastics, which often end up in overflowing trash cans near the sea or on the beach. Every year, the island welcomes more than two million tourists, which is 16 times its own resident population. Limited resources, lack of environmental awareness and education, plus a scarcity of alternative materials are key issues.

The TUI Junior Academy Rhodes establishes a training programme for teachers covering climate-related topics and delivers educational seminars on ocean and shark awareness to students around the island of Rhodes. Adopting a model of classroom theory followed by hands-on activities in nature, the programme engages all 99 elementary and secondary schools on Rhodes, as well as public sector organisations, and raises awareness about the importance of a sustainable tourism sector.

Plastic pollution is a key issue on Rhodes, with tourists generating a lot of waste such as water bottles, food containers, and shopping bags. This waste can easily end up in the ocean - especially if trash cans overflow or have no lid - harming marine life and damaging the ecosystem. The limited recycling capability on Rhodes means that the island struggles to manage the volume of plastic waste generated during the high season. This can lead to overflowing landfills, which can be a health hazard and contribute to pollution.

Also, many single-use plastics contain harmful chemicals that can leach into the environment over time. These chemicals can contaminate soil and water, affecting local ecosystems and potentially harm wildlife.

TUI Junior Academy Rhodes is an environmental programme that includes educational and experiential coastal and underwater clean-up actions for all students on the island. In partnership with All For Blue, it delivers educational sessions on marine conservation and beach clean-ups to 17, 200 students and 2,150 schoolteachers in 57 elementary schools and 42 high schools.

Using non formal education, students and teachers combine a theoretical approach with experiential action to acquire knowledge, develop skills, form attitudes and raise awareness about protecting the marine ecosystem and think how to solve various environmental problems.

The programme inspires them to act together for their local communities and think globally. Following a theoretical educational element, experiential beach and underwater cleaning activities takes place involving the students and teachers as well as certified divers from the All For Blue team. This brings together everything they’ve learnt, and all participating students receive a digital certificate of attendance. Six activities take place each year involving 500 students each time, with an overall total of almost 6,000 students. Reusable gear such as gloves and sacks, as well as nets for the divers are used. During the winter season, online seminars take the place of beach clean-ups.

The students are also advised and instructed on how to create their own volunteer team, with a challenge campaign providing each volunteer team will reusable gear as well as a set of stainless-steel straws when they organise and provide evidence of their first beach clean-up.

The plastic removed during the beach clean-ups is upcycled into 20 trash cans for recycling. These are made from granulated recycled plastic - with a capacity of 115 litres – and are placed at the town hall and other prominent public spaces to remind the local community about the project and the principles of a circular economy.


All For Blue aims to connect people to the oceans through educational outreach programmes and community cleanups. With its ocean conservation seminars, the organisation informs future generations about the balance of marine ecosystems and to provide them with alternatives to single-use plastics. By organising environmental projects throughout Greece and other countries they aim to educate children about marine life and the necessity to protect it, while simultaneously dispelling urban myths about creatures that live in the water, like sharks. They try to acquaint children with the importance of every creature to the cycle of marine life and by extension to the sustainability of the entire planet. Through its actions, All For Blue educates the participants of its programmes, giving ways and solutions for the smallest possible destruction of the environment.

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