The first clean-up of the Streamline Project was held on Wednesday, 5 October,  at Rainham, Phoenix, and was successfully concluded with great collaboration between civil society and the municipality.

After much planning and deliberation, the first stream was selected: the Greenheights stream, corners of Greenbury Drive and Daleview Road, opposite Greenheights Primary school.

Volunteers from the community arrived early in the morning, geared up for the clean-up. Ward 48, Councillor Michelle Lutchmen and her team joined in with great coaction.

Site inspections were performed and water samples were taken. It was discovered that E.coli levels were excessively high, making it impossible for volunteers to clean inside the stream. However, the Streamline Team collaborated to the challenge.

Meanwhile, eThekwini Roads and Stormwater assisted with staff, TLB and tipper truck, to assist with the removal of the mixture of litter, rubble and building material dumped on the site. “Our volunteers would not have been able to work through the diabolical jumble of dirt on their own”, said Gerda, leader of the Streamline Project. “We are grateful for the much needed assistance and expertise of the municipality to make this task possible.”

EThekwini Parks, Leisure and Cemeteries assisted with the removal of alien plants and trees, while Durban Solid Waste supported the project with staff and collection of many bags of waste. Metro Police assisted with traffic control for a smooth operation. Checkers supported the clean-up and provided refreshments for volunteers.

The area around the stream was successfully cleaned, but left with one dilemma: How would this area remain clean? Education officers from DSW, Environmental Health, Coastal and Stormwater, and Water and Sanitation and CPF representatives were all present to distribute literature and with the aim to create awareness of the effects following waste pollution. Education is key to keep the stream and surrounding areas healthy and free of litter.

Streamline Operations Team: Safe Cities, eThekwini officials, and CPF.

Report by Zoé Pillay.  Photography by Shaima Birima.