The commune of Ile d'Oléron uses donkeys to assist in its beach cleaning operations. About fifty beach clean-up operations were organised during the year with the participation of many volunteers and students (secondary school, college and school students). Working in this way has made it possible to collect micro-waste from beaches while preserving the unique sea foreshore and the ecosystems of the beach and dune. The innovation of this approach in combining animal power, environmental education, the preservation of a local donkey breed (Ane du Poitou) and citizen volunteering to clean up a sensitive environment. The days, times and places of the clean-ups are broadcast via the Tourist Offices, social networks and websites as well as the municipality's interactive information panel.
This project is one of the nominees for the 28th edition of the Eco Action Trophies, the leading sustainable development competition for local communities, organised by the Les Eco Maires association.