The South Straddie Cleanup 2019 did not disappoint - offering an amazing weekend and learning experience for those who took part. Check out this roundup from Cheryl Tan - one of our fab volunteers!
The RCA team were among over 50 volunteers from a range countries (including the USA, Brazil, Spain, New Zealand, Singapore and of course Australia!) who all came together for a common cause and picked up 650 kgs of rubbish in under 3 hours!
Volunteers learnt how to fill out a data collection sheet used by Positive Change for Marine Life (PCML) to sort the rubbish collected into different categories. This was useful in understanding what and where the rubbish was coming from and made everyone reflect on the bigger issue at hand; the insidious movement from "non-sustainable single-use plastic" to "biodegradable single-use plastic" which is simply placing a band-aid over the issue of micro-plastics and not addressing consumer behaviour towards single-use plastic.
It was a great segway into the evening presentations given by participating organisations (Cleanwater Group, Positive Change for Marine Life & Surfrider Foundation Gold Coast Tweed) which explained the multi-dimensional approach adopted by these groups. It did not stop just at organising community clean-ups; instead they take things one step further by engaging with the community both locally and overseas to find the root cause(s) of pollution and collaborating with local councils and government to implement effective waste management strategies.
Thanks to Cleanwater Group for inviting us along to the event, as well as charity partners Positive Change for Marine Life, Surfrider Foundation Australia and Tangaroa Blue. As well as all of the event sponsors: Byron Bay Brewer, Spirit of the Gold Coast Whale Watching, Patagonia, Biome Eco Stores, Charlies Fruit Markets and Tipplers Licence Cafe for helping make the day such a HUGE success.
A big thanks to City of Gold Coast for their support.