The main idea of the project was to build a floating vehicle of recycled (and recyclable) materials only. Well, I think we made it! The Baltica project team is still working on the construction of the raft, but we are planning to finish it tomorrow.
There are several major construction materials out of which we build the Baltica raft. First of all, plastic bottles. They were collected in various schools in Kraków. In each school, the collection was preceded by a series of workshops and presentations on the subject of the project, the importance of water in human life, the Vistula river.
The response was different, depending on the school and the age group to which the presentation was addressed. Some kids were extremely active and interested in what we are doing, some kept on repeating
'this can not be done'. Well, we will prove that it can be done! At one of the schools, we asked the kids to draw how they imagined our raft. Their ideas were truly amazing, crazy and inspiring! I think we all discovered that working with children can give a lot of satisfaction and it is the best way of bringing a change to the world.
We packed all the collected bottles (didn't have time to count them properly, but according to our calculation we have something around 2 thousand of plastic bottles!) into plastic bags that are normally used for potatoes or onions. Did you know that around 34 bottles fit in one bag? We do know it now! We made over 50 bags like that! Each bottle cap had to be tightened and at the end of the 'packing-day' we had
blisters on our hands :). Then we used salvage mesh-fence for stiffening the construction. We got the mesh-fence from different people, always for free and always in a pretty poor condition :). At the end of the rafting it will be totally useless and we will take it to a scrap-heap. So this mesh-fence had to be separated into pieces 1,5m wide and 2m long. Then we put the potato bags full of bottles, rolled the mesh-fence and
eventually combined several pieces together to get a 'banana' in effect. This 'banana' is how we call a 5m long float. The whole raft will be built of 7 such floats.
So now we only need to attach the wooden deck (made of pallets we got for free) to the bottles… Friday is the launching day! We are very busy completing the equipment, media work and obviously the construction but I believe we will make it on time. The river is waiting for us to come and I count minutes and seconds until the start of the adventure!