South Africa: The Painstaking Task of Keeping NMB's Swartkops River Clean

analysis

Twenty years ago their home at AJ van Coller on the banks of the Swartkops River in Nelson Mandela Bay was destroyed when the community was moved to make space for a hazardous dumpsite. But in 2017 they returned to fight for the health of their river - and two years later they have removed 38,000 bags of rubbish from the river banks and surroundings.

In the Nelson Mandela Bay neighbourhood of Wells Estate everyone knows that if Dolly Mitchell is close, you do not drop a piece of plastic on the ground.

"We tell them straight," she says. "Who do they think must pick it up?"

For the past two years, Mitchell, Marie Tiervry and Berenice Koemoete have been part of a team of five who have picked up 38,000 bags of plastic waste from the banks of their beloved Swartkops River as part of a project run by the Zwartkops Trust.

They receive a stipend for their work from Spar Eastern Cape.

"Marie told me what she was doing and I said yes, I will come help. I didn't have a job at the time," Mitchell said.

"It is very dirty around here," she explains with a wave...

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: Daily Maverick

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.