In many developing countries waste management is a real issue which affects many communities and particularly urban areas, where a lot of people live at high density. Whilst visiting many communities in urban Africa one can often notice large amounts of rubbish collected at the side of the road or next to communal areas like football pitches or markets.
Rubbish not only promotes vermin and disease, but can also present immediate hazards as it often contains broken glass and is often burned out in the open with children never too far from the fire and its dangerous fumes.
Whilst visiting Kalingalinga it did not take a very long time to realise that with hundreds of often barefooted children playing next to oversized amounts of rubbish, accidents are only a matter of time. This is how the first litter picking session was conceived, on a Saturday morning after football training, 20 boys started to clean up with limited resources and tools one of the sides of the Kalingalinga community pitch. Now regular litter picking sessions are organised by Mabvuto, one of the team members who receives School sponsorship through the project.
Regular litter picking sessions promote a safer, cleaner and more pleasant environment for the community, for the ‘Kalingalinga on the Ball’ team, but also for the other numerous boys’ and girls’ teams who make use of the pitch on a daily basis.
Keeping the community team is not only a bonding exercise for the team, but also a way to give back to their community and promote a sense of caring and responsibility for their surroundings and wellbeing of their neighbours.