Just a whole lot of great people showing some #islandlove today

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The First Friday Roadside Cleanup crew is about to begin --- redubbed the Second Friday crew because, seriously, who would have wanted to pick up trash on the mornng after New Year's Eve?
The First Friday Roadside Cleanup crew is about to begin — re-dubbed the Second Friday crew because, seriously, who would have wanted to pick up trash on the morning after New Year’s Eve? Above, Sue Blair (left) addresses the troops before some head north, some head to the shore and the rest start at the bridge (background) and work our way up the road.

Road trip: It is crazy wonderful how many people showed up this morning to pick up roadside and beach trash north of the bridge on Ambergris Caye today! Certainly our hard-core regulars were out in force. And so many folks were here for the first time.

Including the drone.

That’s right. We had a drone filming us as we picked up trash!

Road crew ready to show some island love.

Watch for the live action, heart-stopping drama of the “Tres Cocos First Friday Roadside Trash Pickup” Experience. Coming to a streaming site near you!

We be so bad!

Here are some great photos Sue Blair took during today’s adventures with trash!  If you see yourself in some of the photos, add your ID!

After two holidays and six weeks off, the trash was spectacularly bad today.

But right now, the road looks spectacularly clean, at least as far north as the old Palapa Bar turnoff. There was some serious energy and determination in this gang today.

And I can’t begin to say, again, how gratifying it was to have fresh faces pitch in and make new friends along the way.

This is where island love begins, at the foot of the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize. It is always the same in this one spot and it seems like this is always were I and Wayne McCrae like to start our work. Two two of us can clean out this hole pretty quickly. By tomorrow? Hmph.
This is where island love begins, at the foot of the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize. It is always the same in this one spot and it seems like this is always were I and Wayne McCrae like to start our work. Two two of us can clean out this hole pretty quickly. By tomorrow? Hmph.

People passing on the road got involved too. A very nice woman from Pennsylvania and her son stopped to chat and donated $50 BZD so that we can buy more trash pickup sticks and bags. A couple from Ohio who joined us for the morning also donated $40 BZD to the cause.

I’d be speechless, if I weren’t a writer. The support and generosity we are receiving is just wonderful.

The drone operator, who I understand will be filming the Phoenix Resort’s weekly beach cleanup tomorrow morning is going to launch a social media campaign for all of Ambergris Caye. Very simply, every time you or your friends, family, workmates launch a cleanup campaign, add the hashtag #islandlove to it.

  1. Pick up trash.
  2. Shoot some selfies of you and your crew.
  3. Post them online with the tag #islandlove .
  4. Help spread the word that Ambergris Caye is being reclaimed for nature and its people.

We can do this!

Right now, I’m going to head out on my bicycle and take one more look at the results of our efforts. Quickly, before the first Styrofoam container or Crystal water bottle is tossed down. It will happen but bit by bit, we’ll all fall under the spell of #islandlove .

 

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11 thoughts on “Just a whole lot of great people showing some #islandlove today

    donalddavis42 said:
    January 8, 2016 at 11:43 am

    Put up/install a trash can/s or improvise some way to let people know they NOW have options for throwing away litter…..it will take awhile to start working but in the end you will see results…….
    You gotta give them alternatives than on the ground.
    And of course signage.

    Like

      robertjhawkins1 responded:
      January 8, 2016 at 11:59 am

      Absolutely, Donald! Working with the San Pedro Town Council, quite a few trash bins have been installed up and down the road. We even held a contest to design the cans. The winning logo is “Trash in the can, feet in the sand.” And believe me, the cans get used! We need lots more and the town council has promised them to us but they also must meet similar needs around the rest of the community.

      For now, we’re very happy with what we have received! Although, I think one more can at the base of the bridge would be a huge help!

      #islandlove

      Like

    mches said:
    January 8, 2016 at 11:49 am

    Makes me want to take a return trip to visit the island, again. Good to see someone cares enough to show up and help clean-up.

    Like

      robertjhawkins1 responded:
      January 8, 2016 at 12:01 pm

      Ya’ll come on back! More and more people are taking the initiative to clean up.It is very gratifying. Also, the sargassum seems to have abated for now, giving town and resort crews a chance to clean the beaches.

      Like

    harry bonnell said:
    January 8, 2016 at 1:49 pm

    There’s a deposit on glass bottles and they are rarely seen on the roadside, probably for that reason. If there was a nickel deposit on smaller plastic bottles and a dime on the larger ones (like we have in California), I bet fewer would get thrown away; and those that get thrown away will be quickly harvested by the kids.

    Like

    robertjhawkins1 responded:
    January 8, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    I agree. A deposit on plastic bottles would have an immediate impact. Also, the bottle deposit needs to be expanded to non-Belikin beers. Picked up a lot of Preisdente and Carab bottles today, and not only because Belikin ran out of beer over the holiday. They just have no refund value.

    Like

    tacogirl said:
    January 8, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    Fantastic 🙂

    Like

    rebelbill said:
    January 9, 2016 at 7:24 pm

    If Belize had a glass and plastics recycling industry, you’d see a lot less trash. If you could get some signs up with your “toes in the sand, trash in the can” slogan, it would help your efforts too.

    Like

      robertjhawkins1 responded:
      January 11, 2016 at 4:42 am

      Agreed. A recycling program for all bottles and plastics would make a huge difference.

      Liked by 1 person

    Amanda said:
    January 11, 2016 at 8:43 am

    It was such a treat for my son and I to meet you in person the other day, Robert! I’ve enjoyed reading your blog in anticipation of our trip here. So impressed with the work you and the volunteers are doing to tidy the island. Thanks as well for your suggestion to visit Marbucks. Their scones and muffins are out of this world! We are making daily visits there now for our gourmet “fix”, lol.

    Like

      robertjhawkins1 responded:
      January 11, 2016 at 8:50 am

      Thank you, Amanda! It was a nice surprise to meet you and your son on the road the other day and your contribution to our clean-up was a delightful bonus!

      Enjoy the rest of your vacation!

      Like

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