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24 Sep 2020

Coastal clean-up continues in Durban North and uMhlanga

Danica Hansen (Northglen News) Picture: Coastal clean-up continues in Durban North and uMhlanga

The Litterboom Project was among several organisations that organised beach clean- ups on International Coastal Clean-up Day, Saturday, 19 September. The clean-up, organised in partnership with WildOceans, will continue until Saturday, 26 September to allow for social distancing with groups of no more than 50 people joining each day between 8 am and 2 pm. Volunteers can choose to visit one of three locations from Durban North to uMhlanga and Ballito.

Cameron Service of  The Litterboom Project said they have partnered with local coffee shops to set up pick up points for volunteers to collect refuse bags.

“Volunteers can collect bags from the coffee shops. If they collect a full bag of litter, they can get a free cappuccino or coffee. We are going to try and do that over all of our sites. We are going to run it over the week and people can come when they want to,” he said.

“We are really excited that we can organise clean-ups at this time, without having crowds, and raise awareness about ocean pollution,” added Rachel Kramer, strategic manager for WildOceans.

Volunteers picking up litter on Virginia Beach can collect their bags at Colombo Coffee at the Beachwood Country Club. Those pitching in to help clean-up in uMhlanga can collect their bags at Coffee Cartell in the Durban View car park. The Litterboom Project is also hosting a clean-up in Ballito where volunteers can collect their bags at Concha Cafe.

“We will have staff at each location. Volunteers who arrive can grab a bag, go and do their clean up and then bring the full bag back to get a coffee. It’s a little bit of an incentive for people to do their bit on the beach,” he said.

Service encouraged volunteers to come prepared with water to drink, comfortable shoes such as running shoes, gloves and masks as well as hats and sun block.

“There’s a huge amount of waste. We have just gone through our drier winter period, so there is seemingly less rubbish. The reason for this is that there hasn’t been much rainfall. We are about to go through about five months of excessive rainfall. In the drier months, everything sits higher up in the river systems and then when the rain comes it discharges everything. It’s crucial for us to set up more teams to work along the rivers to catch litter before it reaches the oceans,” he said.

Refuse collected in the clean-up will be collected from all three sites and sorted by The Litterboom Project before being sent to recycling facilities or landfill sites.