For three years, Sion Stavrovski of Matakatia has been picking up the rubbish he finds around the areas’s roadsides, beaches and parks when walking his dog.
Last month, on a walk from his home to Manly Village and back he found 5kg of rubbish. Another walk along just one side of Brightside Road netted two large bags full of trash.
Sion says he is finding a lot more rubbish around, particularly around schools, playgrounds and sportsfields. “It makes me wonder whether parents are not showing their children how to clean up their rubbish,” he says.
Most commonly he finds drink cans and takeaway containers but he has also picked up a piece of carpet, socks and even underwear. “It’s really disgusting,” he says. “People are lazy and must throw things from cars or just drop them as they walk. Most of what I pick up would not break down if left in nature. Added up it creates a lot of harm in our environment.”
Sion invited others to come and help him clean up Orewa Beach last month and seven people did so. He plans to hold more local cleanups once the weather improves and has started a Facebook page, Clean & Walk NZ, to publicise these.