The Central Baltic Programme 2014-2020 finances result orientated cross-border cooperation projects in Estonia, Finland (incl Åland), Latvia and Sweden

Almost 400 people celebrated European Cooperation Day and cleaned beaches of the Baltic Sea together

Monday, September 21, 2015 - 16:08
Cleanliness of the Baltic Sea is an excellent example of an issue that needs cooperation across the borders. Cleaning the seashores together was therefore seen as a fun and useful way to celebrate the European Cooperation Day 2015 in the Central Baltic region.

On Saturday 19 September the Central Baltic Programme, together with many local organisers including the Estonia-Latvia Programme, gathered nearly 400 people to clean beaches in Oxelösund (Sweden), Mariehamn (Åland), Yyteri (Finland), Treimani (Estonia) and Ainaži (Latvia). The events varied in their focus according to the local specific needs on the beaches.

While the cleaners in Mariehamn and Oxelösund were collecting great amounts of garbage from different plastic pieces to underwear and car tires, the team in Yyteri removed 10.000 litres of algae that would otherwise disturb the beach vegetation. The participants in Treimani, for their part, didn't manage to find so much trash but cut and transported plenty of reed away from the shore making the beach more attractive for the local inhabitants.

All participants received yellow t-shirts to show that although we are separated by the Baltic Sea, we can and should form a team and work together to overcome the joint challenges. Beach cleaners were happy to hear that such cooperation is taking place in hundreds of Interreg cooperation projects all over Europe. There was also a photo contest organised in social media linking the five events together.

Many happy and satisfied comments were heard during the mostly sunny and surprisingly warm autumn day with one of them especially showing that the event hit home for the participants. Having heard more about Interreg, Noora (42) in Yyteri said: "It usually feels that EU is somewhere far away from me, but now I feel that it's not."

By sharing these photos from the Joint Central Baltic beach clean-up we want to wish everyone Happy European Cooperation Day!

See how other programmes have celebrated the day at

Beach cleaning team in Yyteri, Finland