Fresh on the heels of the Year 12 science departments’ winning First Place (senior secondary entry) at the Columban Season of Creation school competition 2023, the Catholic students and teachers of Xavier College spent the Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday holiday by cleaning up the Elevuka Creek in the middle of Ba town as their 2023 Season of Creation project.
They had sought permission from the Ba Town Council last week who were only too happy to give their consent. According to the school manageress, Mrs Margie Muller, “They told us that this was a first in the history of Ba that anyone thought of cleaning the creek ..[especially] a school”.
“The Manager and staff of Shop n Save Supermarket were pleasantly surprised to see us cleaning the Creek and offered the group juice, water and garbage bags with a promise of a lunch of curry chicken next time the group did another clean up of the creek”.
Mrs Margaret Elisha, deputy head of the Parents, Teachers and Friends Association, and representative of Ba parish on it, as always supported they young people by providing lunch.
While the students enjoyed fun together while cleaning the Creek, they also took note of the utter disregard of the of marine life in Fiji’s rivers and creeks by humans. As they cleaned the river of plastic bottles and bags, tires, vinyl carpets, clothing etc people continued to throw their rubbish into the river. A sad reality for a country that prides itself on its beauty and relies so heavily on tourism.
By the end of the day, students and teachers collected forty garbage bags filled of rubbish just between the Market and the bridge in town.
They have no doubt that as Catholics we need to do more to raise awareness in Ba on keeping our waterways and rivers free of plastics and rubbish.
Several overseas ex students have shown interest in supporting any future clean up of Elevuka Creek and Mrs Muller hopes that, with support from the Ba Town Council and others, they can bring back the Creek to full health.
Kudos and thanks to Xavier College for their great work !
A school founded 70 years ago by the Columbans is still leading the way in its care for the environment. I am sure even Prophet Muhammad was smiling approvingly as these young people celebrated his birthday in this way…
More pictures below: