Volunteers collect more than 130,000 cigarette butts

1,500 volunteers representing 23 organisations take part in clean-up efforts of Dubai Municipality

Staff Report
17:28 October 3, 2017

Dubai: Through the Community Volunteer Initiative, Dubai Municipality mobilised 1,500 volunteers from different walks of life, including employees of public and private establishments, students, families and people of determination, who are interested in the environmental services and cleanliness of the city.

“Through the participation of the environmental volunteer teams in the first half of this year, we have been able to collect more than 130,000 cigarette butts using 170 specialised volunteer hours for this purpose only,” said Abdul Majeed Sifai, director of Waste Management Department and head of the Awareness Team on Sustainable Waste Management at Dubai Municipality.

“Since the beginning of this year, approximately 1,500 volunteer hours have been completed and these 1,500 participants represented more than 32 organisations, a significant increase over last year. The increase in the number of participants reflects the success of the initiative in attracting the largest number of participants, which is the fruit of marketing our activities through the social media networking sites,” pointed out Sifai.

He said the volunteers accomplished many cleaning tasks, such as removing cigarette butts on the beaches, removing random posters in commercial areas, getting rid of the waste in landfill areas, cleaning industrial and residential areas, and contributing to the field of awareness.

Sifai stressed the importance of creating and supporting voluntary opportunities because of their clear contributions in supporting the efforts of preserving the environment and the civilised appearance of the emirate.

He said the department’s initiative, ‘An Hour with the Cleaning Worker’, was one of the most important golden opportunities for volunteering enthusiasts to volunteer in the area of cleaning the city and charitable work, which clearly contributes to spreading the culture of social responsibility among the members of the community.

Sifai said this is a continuous opportunity to volunteer throughout the year without restricting it to a clean-up campaign or programme.

“We are always keen to bring up voluntary contributions in the best possible way. We provide all work requirements to the volunteers and all their efforts are documented on the municipality’s official social media sites and in the newspapers, in addition to honouring them on the ground by distributing certificates of appreciation and participation. Handing over of these certificates is a tribute to them for their efforts in carrying out the voluntary work and in appreciation of the hygiene profession,” said Sifai.