[Mossel Bay, South Africa, 25 April 2019] Several initiatives are being held to commemorate Earth Day by Transnet National Ports Authority’s Port of Mossel Bay in collaboration with Oceans Research and Mossel Bay Municipality.
The activities, aimed at local Port of Mossel Bay adopted primary school learners, include a school waste management competition, clean-up campaign and an educational port visit all taking place between 22 and 30 April 2019.
Celebrated annually on 22 April, Earth Day calls for worldwide support for environmental protection. It was first celebrated in 1970, and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network and celebrated in more than 193 countries each year.
The commemorative activities kicked off with the launch of an Earth Day Waste Management Competition, focused on educating school learners on the importance of reducing plastic pollution. Teams of grade 7 learners from selected adopted schools were invited to develop a presentation on environmental conservation, with special emphasis on how to reduce, reuse, recycle and eventually remove plastics from the environment. Learners were judged on presentation, relevance of content to the theme, practical recommendations on how to manage waste and creativity.
Next, an Earth Day Clean-up campaign was held on 26 April 2019, where TNPA Port of Mossel Bay, Mossel Bay Municipality and Ocean Research employees along with volunteers and the grade 7 learners gathered to clean up an area in KwaNonqaba. The campaign also provided practical experience to the learners and other stakeholders on the importance of taking personal responsibility in managing community waste.
On 30 April 2019, the grade 7 learners will visit the Port of Mossel Bay, where they will benefit from career presentation and practical job shadowing activities that will expose them to the various careers opportunities at TNPA and the marine industry. It is at this juncture that the learners will also present their Earth Day Waste Management Competition presentations.
Port of Mossel Bay Port Manager, Shadrack Tshikalange said environmental awareness is embedded in TNPA’s Corporate Social Investment strategy. “We believe deliberate action is required to drive sustainable social impact. We are also committed towards empowering the local youth with knowledge by involving them in awareness activities around significant days like Earth Day,” he said.
Volunteers including Mossel Bay Port Manager Shadrach Tshikalange (front, far right) participated in an Earth Day Clean-up campaign on 26 April 2019 in KwaNonqaba alongside grade 7 learners from selected TNPA adopted schools.