Last Saturday, the 7th of January, the Climate Compliance November team had a beach clean-up in Petit Bordel. My name is Malte, and I am part of this awesome team! We went to Petit Bordel in the morning after breakfast. Our teacher, Jesper, drove us there with his new bus. At the beach, we were surprised to see so many people at the beach! But we had to wait a bit until the cleanup started, since some people were missing.
Only by glancing at the beach you could already tell that the people got used to dumping their trash here. Trash, especially things that don't decompose easily (like plastic) are very harmful to the environment. It damages plants and if animals or fish eat it they can die. Trash makes a place look less attractive and thus fewer people will visit it. By simply building trash bins and picking the trash you see around, you make the place more beautiful and habitable. Unfortunately, many people in St.Vincent are not aware of the dire consequences of littering. It is our goal to teach as many people as possible about these consequences and how to prevent littering.
Once everybody was ready, we handed out latex gloves and plastic bags and got started. I decided it would be smartest to start from one ends of the shore and to work my way to the middle. This would decrease the distance that I would need to walk back to grab a new bag. Most of the volunteers and my team started in the middle or at the other end.
Most of the trash I picked up wasn't even laying around but was underneath the sand! I found more than one trash bag buried in the sand, accompanied with other trash and very interesting things. Bags, purses, flip-flops, metal bars (I am not kidding!) and two beautiful shells. I thought about keeping them both but ended up giving one away to a little local girl who was looking them with great interest.
I spent most of my time at the beach cleanup at one spot. You wouldn't believe the amount of trash I found there above AND underneath the ground. I think you could fill half a van with it. Sadly, I had to leave the "big" stuff (like the metal bars, parts of a metal fence and bicycle frames) at the beach. I was told it would be removed later.
In total, the whole cleanup took us around 2 hours. During that time, many children joined us and had fun cleaning up and talking with us. Our team had prepared banana bread as a snack and all the helpers were allowed to take the first piece(s).
Afterwards, the kids asked for the rest of our latex gloves to fill them with water and play with them. But instead of throwing them in a trash bin, they just left the gloves where they threw them. Once again I reminded myself just how important it is to teach the people, especially the young ones, that littering should be avoided and that nature should be protected. Because the Earth doesn't belong to us. We belong to the Earth. So let's keep our plant clean, because we still want to live on this beautiful planet for many centuries to come.