Embarrassed about their filth

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems
04 February 2010

“Everyone, when talking about Duncan Village, associates it with filth and rubbish….To us that is a disgrace and an embarrassment. You don’t want to tell people that you are from Duncan Village.” These are the words of Wonga Manga, a employee from the Duncan Village Dense Settlement Project, tasked with cleaning up the filth of Duncan Village.

Duncan Village, East London, South Africa. Photo by Jennifer Griffiths.

Nwabisa Mali, also from the Project, said they decided to clean the streets after noticing that rubbish was filling local streams and roadside gutters, leading to blockages. Mali said the blockages could cause floods, leaving those living next to waterways at risk. “We want to change Duncan Village from being a dumping village to being an evergreen village. Our main aim is to make sure that people are trained to understand that throwing rubbish anywhere is not good,” said Mali.

Yesterday, 167 residents from six of the township’s wards, together with the project leaders, took to the streets with brooms and spades. The residents are given three- month contracts and receive stipends at the end of each month. Mali said their project was part of poverty eradication in the area, where many people are unemployed. The project started in 2007. To date, over 1000 people have taken part.

“We want to make sure that Duncan Village goes back to its former glory and the only people who can do this are residents of this township,” Mali said, adding that they get money to pay the workers who participate in the project by applying for funds.

Source: Dispatch Online

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