Ashley Tapp and Jeremy Brown met in Alberta’s oil capital Fort McMurray when she was working as a welder and apprentice, and Jeremy was her journeyman. But the two eventually found themselves called to a different purpose – environmental clean-up.
“We all started out as volunteers, but now I actually get to say that I get paid to clean beaches.”Ashley Tapp
“We all started out as volunteers, but now I actually get to say that I get paid to clean beaches. That’s crazy,” said Tapp in an exclusive video interview with West Coast Now.
“It really makes you feel like you’re giving back.Ashley Tapp
They now work for the non-profit Ocean Legacy, restoring shorelines and oceans by processing marine debris. They often get helicoptered into remote locations, and sweep the beaches with a team of cleaners who then recycle, repurpose, or dispose of materials like lost fishing gear, garbage from ships, shipping containers and even tsunami debris.
“It’s very hard work. You’re in there, you’re cleaning, you’re elbows deep into the salal [shrubs] and the log jams, and you’re hiking, and you’re dragging rope and all of this stuff down the shoreline,” she went on. “But at the end of the day, you feel like a true superhero. You’re just lacking a cape.”
The couple can’t think of anything else they’d rather be doing.
“It really makes you feel like you’re giving back. We all take from this planet a lot, so when you find anything to do that helps you be a part of a better future, you just have to take it,” said Tapp.