WIJABA Beach Clean-Up🐬
Pasir Putih Beach, Situbondo, East Java
Our WIJABA team in Indonesia organized a beach clean-up on December 29th, 2021 at Pasir Putih Beach in Situbondo, East Java. This event was a team bonding exercise, as well as a way to practice environmental stewardship.
When we asked our WIJABA Indonesia Assistant Director, Farah Mustika Sari, about the event, she said,
"Cleaning up the beach brings positive energy and good impact for the environment. It also positively influences people (in our community). The goal is to deliver the message to the people around us that the simple, small, good steps we take can have a significant impact on the environment if we do it with heart. We hope that this event can inspire many people to do the same good thing for a better environment. It is also very good for WIJABA team bonding since we found that this activity brings so much joy, happiness, and a good impact."
During the 3 hours our team of 19 were working on the beach, the group noticed that there wasn't a single trash can within the 1-mile stretch of sand! The coastline was littered with plastic waste ranging from diapers, to plastic bottles, and miscellaneous plastic packaging. By the time they were done, they had collected nearly 90 lbs of trash!
We are so proud of our team for making a positive impact on the environment and for bringing awareness to their community. This is a step in the right direction! But there is still a lot of work to be done.
According to The World Bank:
Indonesia is battling one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time--marine plastic debris
Uncollected waste contributes more to plastic waste discharges than leakages from final disposal sites, and very little plastic is recycled.
An estimated 346.5 kton/year (estimated range of 201.1 – 552.3 kton/year) of plastic waste is discharged into the marine environment from land-based sources in Indonesia, two thirds of which come from Java and Sumatra."
Although these are very discouraging facts, there are many things that can be done. One way we can help combat the damaging trend of plastic waste and marine debris, is to raise awareness and improve waste collection practices. Beach clean-up campaigns like ours help encourage healthy waste behaviors and prevent hazardous materials from circulating through the ecosystem.
As we expand our Environmental Education Program in Partnership with Jane Goodall's Roots & Shoots in 2022, we plan to host many more beach clean-ups. Imagine what else we can do if in only 3 hours, a small group was able to clean up a 1-mile stretch of beach and collect nearly 90 lbs of trash! As the great Dr. Jane Goodall says, “What you do makes a difference. And you have to decide what difference you want to make.”
Note: One of our main objectives is to keep our staff and the children we serve safe. All activities are done with covid precautions and follow local protocols.