How one man cleared away 4000 tons of trash

Posted by Sonya Schoeman on 5 June 2017

Short answer: with determination, and a lot of help.


In preparation for World Oceans Day, Getaway is collaborating with the Sustainable Seas Trust to bring awareness to the health of the beaches, oceans and waterways that we love to play in – and perhaps find some exciting citizen-inspired solutions to the issues it faces.

What’s the issue?

Africa is the second most polluted continent in the world, and what’s carelessly thrown away on land, often ends up in the sea. Except seas are shared – your sea is my sea is our sea. So we have to find shared answers for our problems.


The kelp beds around this part of the coast are a playground for all kinds of creatures, both marine and terrestrial.

What’s the solution?

Here’s a very good start: The African Marine Waste Network was launched in July 2016 for Africa’s 38 coastal and islands states. Its very first conference, the African Marine Network Conference, takes place in Port Elizabeth from 9-13 July, and it’s hoped that out of this will come a guide to action for how to handle marine waste. It’s hoped to publish the first edition in December 2017. Wouldn’t it be great if all the countries bought into it and our continent was working toward one, central goal?

What can you do?

We’re looking for engagement. Here are two ways you can do that:
1. Got a good idea for a waste-management initiative? It could be anything from a clean-up initiative in your area, through to an educational or awareness drive, or ways in which industry in your area could help to improve their waste. Send us your idea.

2. Know someone who’s already doing something like that? Send in his or her name and he/she could be our Eco-Hero of the week.

Just like Afroz Shah did. Some things are in our hands.