–Zero Waste Sooke
Zero Waste Sooke is seeking volunteers for a pair of upcoming events: A litter-busting street clean-up on Earth Day (April 22) and, in late May, Sooke’s first-ever Repair Cafe.
The Team Up to Clean Up blitz of Sooke streets, ditches and dump spots is planned for Earth Day on Saturday, April 22. Neighbourhood team captains and volunteers of all ages will be supplied with the gloves and bags. Zero Waste will arrange pick-up and disposal with municipal contractors. Please email email@example.com to sign up and participate.
Zero Waste is targeting the following areas: East Sooke, Saseenos, Kaltasin/Billings Spit, Sooke River Road, Sunriver, Sooke Town Centre, Broom Hill, Whiffen Spit, John Muir Elementary School area, Kemp Lake Road and Otter Point. Ideally, local crews will be available to tackle each neighbourhood.
A United Nations undertaking launched in 1970, Earth Day is now observed in 196 countries and last year involved more than 1 billion participants. This year’s theme is “Earth Play,” which encourages families to get outdoors and connect with nature. In that spirit, Zero Waste organizers will be creating litter scavenger hunts to keep youngsters engaged and amused.
Anyone who wishes to volunteer as a neighborhood Team Captain or has tips on litter problem areas in Sooke is invited to call Zero Waste Sooke coordinator Wendy O’Connor at 250-361-6965. “What better way to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary than to care for our communities with maximum participation and awareness of our sensitive environment,” says Wendy.
Once the clean-up is complete, Zero Waste turns its attention to hosting the Sooke Repair Cafe at a TBA location in late May. Repair Cafes are free events at which local residents are invited to bring broken household items to a central location where they can meet with volunteer repair people armed with all the expertise, tools and materials to get the job done.
As a result, a wide range of items — clothes, furniture, computers, personal electronics, bikes, appliances, toys, etc. — can be returned to working order rather than being junked in the landfill.
“More details are coming, but we’re putting the call out now for fixers and other volunteers,” says Wendy, who is setting up the cafe in coordination with the team working on the new Makerspace at EMCS. “If you’re good at repairing things and enjoy helping others learn how, then please join us.”
Repair Cafes are regularly scheduled in Victoria and Saanich, however this will be the first in Sooke. A second local cafe is planned at EMCS in the fall once the Makerspace is officially open. The next Repair Cafe at the Central Branch of the Victoria Public Library is on April 15.
A working group affiliated with Transition Sooke, Zero Waste is into its third year of local activities. It meets monthly on the third-Wednesday-of-the-month at the Sooke Public Library. The organization recently received a District of Sooke Community Grant to help cover the costs of the Earth Day clean-up and the two Repair Cafes.
“We’re a warm, welcoming group of folks dedicated to making the most of local resources and educating the next generation about the importance of waste reduction,” explains Wendy. “We’re building momentum and can always use extra hands, heads and hearts to help us out in all kinds of ways — planning, event support, communications, photography/video, you name it and we’ll find a role for you!”