GEORGE NEWS - Cleaning up starts at home, is the motto of two cleaning teams from communities within George. The Sikhula Sonke Cooperation in Thembalethu and a group of five women from Borcherds have taken responsibility for their communities and invite others to join them.
The Sikhula Sonke Cooperation members saw their neighbourhoods and streets becoming filthy with dumped waste and no one was making an effort to pick it up. Lunga Pieters says they formed the cooperation with a member representing each site in Thembalethu.
"We saw that the dirt and waste made our communities sick. So we had to get up, but Covid stopped us from working," Pieters says.
They only started working in Level 1 and opportunities are far and few between, but the municipality does its best to help. "But we need more to be able to make an income. Cleaning up is what we enjoy doing, and if we can make a living from it, even better."
At the moment the team from Thembalethu does small projects without payment, hoping to establish a name in the community, as they want to eventually generate an income through this work.
Elma Robertson and the women from Badnell Street in Borcherds say their wake-up call was when Covid came and brought the harsh realities into their homes. Robertson says it was very real to her when she had Covid in her house, and was told that even the small cockroaches and field mice can carry diseases into your home.
She started cleaning outside her house and then across the street, and when more hands came to help, they cleaned up a dumping hotspot on the corner across from her house.
Now even the children in the street are involved, coming to tell them if someone is dumping their garbage in the street.
"If people just get up to put out their garbage on collection days, it will already make a difference. But we realise many are just lazy, and when they finally realise the truck is outside, it is too late."
Both these teams need the support of their communities and local businesses to support them either with equipment, gloves, sanitisers, masks and black bags so they can keep cleaning and keep their areas clean.
Contact Pieters on 071 310 8341 and Robertson on 079 611 8108.
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