Be a part of the Solution, not part of the Pollution
Trashtag is no longer a tag, it is an action seen wherein people have enthusiastically participated in various clean up drives. Locals and tourists have joined the festive cleaning program in many places now; which was also inspired by the #Trashtag challenge. Here we report on the Mangrove Clean up drive at Chapora River, Morjim that occurred on May 8, 2019 and the Small Vagator Beach Belt cleanup drive that took place on May 5, 2019 where our partner Drishti also participated
Diapers. In the middle of the expanse of the mangrove island, a dot on the Chapora river, otherwise called ‘pristine’ there was a diaper. Nay, there were dozens of them, jostling for space in the mess with bottles and milk pouches. This is the anatomy of mess on the picturesque islands, signposts of the carelessness of man. But Goa is waking up. In the periphery of Herald’s #trashtag initiative with Drishti marine, parallel uinitiaitves with the same goal, are taking place. And yet these initiatives are connected and will meet as one, with every stakeholder united not in terms of agreements and tie ups, but with the broad understanding that we are working together to give strength to a citizen’s movement to clean up Goa, not dependent on government participation or help, but very welcoming of the government agreeing to be a partner in this cause On April 8 2019, Cruise organizer Konkan Explorers took the initiative to do a cleanup drive on a lovely Mangrove island in Chapora River at Morjim which is messed up with plastic bottles, plastic bags, milk pouches and diapers, glass bottles which represent the major bulk of the pollution causing the suffocation of trees and plants. More than 25 volunteers cruised towards the mangrove island which desperately needed help. Everyone joined the hands together and helped the mangroves to breathe again. We all know that Mangrove forests are among the most productive ecosystems on earth. It protects shorelines from damaging storm and hurricane winds, waves, and floods and also helps prevent erosion by stabilizing sediments with their tangled root systems. Poonam Ribo, Co-Founder of Konkan Express states that earlier they used to clean the mangroves by themselves, but lately they observed that the garbage was increasing and the mangroves were dying. “The roots of the mangroves were suffocating and were dying due to the plastic. And so we came up with this clean up drive. The response was overwhelming. There were people from all over Goa, travelers, children, Russians who participated in the drive. “I’ve participated in quite a few clean up drives and it is frustrating to see garbage at various places,” says Vijaya Josephine Pais, Founder of ‘Off Beat Goa’. “We chose mangroves as it is an eco-sensitive spot and we observed that it was more of household garbage which was dumped into the river by the surrounding villagers. Hence, I feel that people need to be more aware about dumping their garbage,” she adds.
The garbage was segregated during the cleanup and handed over to Drishti Lifesaving; a professional lifeguard service company currently engaged in cleaning up Goa and also has a tie up with Herald for the #Trashtag challenge. They are collecting the segregated garbage from the spots and taking to the Saligao Garbage Treatment Plant. Apart from the Mangrove Clean Up Drive recently on May 8 2019, an initiative by Guru Bar and its collaborators cleaned another part of Goa at the Small Vagator Beach Belt on May 5 2019.Many beautiful souls cleaned up Iconic Small Vagator beach belt from kids of the age 3 up to elderly men and women. There were locals and tourists as well who pitched in to clean up one of the most beautiful beaches of Goa. The impacts have been huge where Guru Bar, Guru Backpackers, Bunkd hostel placed a water refill point to help reduce single use plastic bottles after being inspired by Carry Your Bottle. Also, Bunkd hostel has begun helping reduce the use of plastic bottles ending up in the oceans and in order to create a sustainable lifestyle they use the mantra ‘Reduce, Reuse and Up cycle’ their team decided to create some art using some junk collected off the beach. Today they will clean the Baga creek and have opened invitations to volunteers. Ryan Volado, of Bunkd Hostels expresses, "Social responsibility is not just a word to be thrown around lightly on social media. If you need to get something done you have to do it yourself first and pay it forward. Be the change you want to see in the world. With more clean up drives and more people together we can save the world.”
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