Filipinos take part in cleaning up Dubai

DUBAI — As early as 8.30am on Friday, around 215 people, mainly Filipinos, turned up at the Al Ras Corniche in Deira to take part in a clean-up drive.

By Criselda E. Diala

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Published: Sat 26 Nov 2005, 9:57 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 8:47 PM

The drive was organised by the Dubai Municipality (DM), Philippine Consulate General (PCG), Canon and Lightform, in support of the worldwide environmental awareness campaign initiated in the late 1980s by the Australian-based volunteer group, Clean-Up the World.

Myrna Rebulanan-Anderson, Lightform President, said they are expecting 600 participants, composed mostly of students, to join the one-day clean-up project at the harbour of Al Ras Corniche. Lightform is a Filipino photographers' guild under the auspices of the PCG.

"This project is not only participated in by Filipinos alone but also by their friends or colleagues at work who share the same concern for the preservation and conservation of the environment," Anderson explained.

She added that the clean-up began as early as Sunday with the DM assigning various locations to particular groups.

"Since Sunday there have been clean-up activities all over Dubai, and Al Ras Corniche has been designated to the Filipinos," Anderson noted.

As the event's major sponsor, DM supplied participants with the official blue "Clean-Up the World" t-shirts, plastic hand gloves, trash bags, besides drinking water and other refreshment items.

Melvin Lozada, a volunteer who has been living in Dubai for 12 years and is working in a shipping company, said the project is a noble endeavour because it has stirred people's concern in protecting the environment. He added that it also developed camaraderie among members of the Filipino community.

Olive Mara, a member of the Filipino Dance Club, said she and her friends did not mind waking up early on a Friday morning to join the event.

"I believe it's important for us to take care of Dubai's environment because we also benefit from it as residents here," she said.

Nadder, a 13-year-old student, said his friend told him about the project and he thought it would be fun to join. "It's for the community. We live here, too, so might as well help," he quipped.

His classmates, Seri and Sammy mentioned that they are aware of the need to protect the environment because it is part of their curriculum in school.

Meanwhile, in line with this project, Lightform also organised an environmental awareness photo competition and exhibition with entries from residents all throughout the UAE.

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