NATION

AnnMary launches #NoBalloonDecember campaign in Nasese

  Fifteen-year-old AnnMary Raduva led a group of environmental enthusiasts on a beach clean-up and mangrove planting expedition along the Nasese foreshore yesterday. There, she also launched the #NoBalloonDecember challenge
03 Dec 2018 12:42
AnnMary launches #NoBalloonDecember campaign in Nasese
Volunteers during the beach clean up at Nasese foreshore on December 1, 2018. Photo: Neelam Prasad

 

Fifteen-year-old AnnMary Raduva led a group of environmental enthusiasts on a beach clean-up and mangrove planting expedition along the Nasese foreshore yesterday.

There, she also launched the #NoBalloonDecember challenge which called on people to refrain from using balloons this festive season and instead opt for sustainable and eco-friendly decorations.

“By not buying balloons, you are giving our environment and the vulnerable animals and marine life a chance to live a little longer,” she said.

Annemary with mum Moira Raduva with baby Eunice

Annemary with mum Moira Raduva with baby Eunice

The Adi Cakabau School student has also called on the government to amend the Fiji Litter Act 2008 and classify balloon releasing as littering.

“When balloons end up in the sea, it is mistaken for food by marine organisms. Once eaten, it blocks their digestive systems and causes the organism to starve,” added Annemary.

Her family resides in Nasese and in weekends she along with her sister Faith and mum Moira Vilsoni-Raduva often go around collecting rubbish at the Suva foreshore.

“Do not be hesitant to pick up other people’s rubbish. It is we who live here, it is our rubbish and it is harmful to the environment so we need to take responsibility,” she said.

From left: Faith Raduva, Immanuel Daniel and Maurea Isimeli during the beach clean-up and mangrove planting expedition on December 1, 2018. Photo: Neelam Prasad

From left: Faith Raduva, Immanuel Daniel and Maurea Isimeli during the beach clean-up and mangrove planting expedition on December 1, 2018. Photo: Neelam Prasad

AnnMary hopes to pursue a career in Forensic Physiology but added she will always be passionate about the environment and is determined to make such campaigns more frequent in future.

“I am confident that youth-led activities such as this would have a vast awareness-raising effect,” she said.

Parents also saw this as a good opportunity to get their children involved.

Nine-year-old Kalelia Cinavi-Lakeba who had come with her mother Melinia Nawadra in support of the clean-up campaign, advised the public to dispose rubbish responsibly.

“Put rubbish in the bins, do not pollute because plastics and balloons are a danger to sea animals,” said the Yat Sen student.

Also there was Opposition Member of Parliament Lenora Qereqeretabua who had, in her maiden speech last Thursday, had applauded AnnMary’s environment efforts.

Member of Parliament Lenora Qerqeretabua with volunteers during the beach clean up

Member of Parliament Lenora Qerqeretabua with volunteers during the beach clean up

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedbackneelam.prasad@fijisun.com.fj


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