Sunday Stills, the next challenge: The letter “G”
So here you have it, anything that begins with the letter “G” A simple challenge but could prove to be fun.
As I set out doing this challenge, I was gravitating towards GARBAGE. I am passionate about garbage and it's effect on our environment. I link my environmental post to SMALL FOOTPRINTS and I am actively involved as a rubbish collector while at the same time teaching the public about recycling in our ZERO WASTE program. yes, Ed, this challenge is fun.
Last year, during our Waitangi Day aka New Zealand day and Pasifika festival, I was involved with a group of like minded people during a whole day festival collecting rubbish and at the same time educating people about recycling. Those were tiring days but very meaningful ones.
I went back to school and educated my school as well. My students couldn't believe that I was a garbage collector.
Zero-waste Strategy Management: Here's the Volunteers at work. Dressed in our official crew kowhai/yellow or kikorangi/blue T-shirt and cow boy hat, we trudged our kikorangi/blue and kakariki/green bins to our different stations. This year, we had our buddies so we could have tiny breaks to watch the arrival of the dignitaries from the Waka/ boats and to listen to the bands.
I was lucky that I had C. as my buddy. She is well traveled and while we were standing in the sun and waiting for our customers, we walked about her travels. We educated the public as to which bins they should sort their waste. Towards the end of the day, we went among the crowd to collect their rubbish so as the make the work faster when everyone left.
It was a very hot day with hardly any clouds. The festival was at the beach, but there was hardly any breeze.
***Ngarimu on his red scooter as he went around the grounds to see if we were OK***
Zero-waste Management Strategy:
Here's the collection of the bags by some of the volunteers, including a very young boy. Ka Pai to him. They had to lug the heavy bags to the quad bikes as runners.
The back-end" of the system is the worst of the jobs. Resource Recovery Centre Manager, Chris with some volunteers have the awful job of additionl sorting of bagged waste. When we finished our part at our stations, we helped them out. We had to sort out the three groups of rubbish, and by the time I left at 7.45pm, they were still working.
What I admire about the Maoris is their ability to joke. One uncle I didn't get his name asked if I got enough of being a Maori. I told him I was just very tired with the sun getting into my head. He joked that he had to do this every day, and he should be called a garbatologist. Another joked that we should have diplomas. Some one joked that disposible nappies should be banned.
I did not meet Ivy who liaised with the stall holders, and Te Hira (Chiefy) who sets waste stations with Ngarimu and monitors the effectiveness of the waste plan.
The volunteers are the silent brigades that made the festival a pleasant one for the festival goers. I have been to many countries, and usually at the end of the day, there is a mountain of rubbish. The Orakei park was very clean, free of rubbish at the end of the festival.
Ka Pai to Ngarimu, Te Hira, Chris, and Ivy for all their planning and logistics. Ka Pai to all the volunteers. Ka Pai to everyone in the Marae for letting me stay in the marae. Something I always wanted to do, but never got the chance.
Auckland City Council provides an inorganic collection free of charge for residents to get rid of large items that would normally not fit in our wheelie bins. This is conceptually a good idea. It also encourages recycling. What is one's rubbish is useful to others. Hordes of collectors, some traders scour the neighbourhood to pick up what they can recycle. The only thing that is not so good is some of these people have no social conscience, they remove what they want and treat this as a tip, and rubbish is all over the grass area and even on the road, making this a very unsightly area.