Environmental Report - Winter 2005
A very warm welcome to all those residents who have recently moved into our beautiful suburb. You are all greatly valued as new members of this rather special family and your contribution to the well being of the residents, the City and the environment will be of ongoing importance.
The question that is so frequently asked about environmental affairs is what are the boundaries? The answer must, of course, be none. The air we breathe, the planet we inhabit, the water we drink and food we eat are all in one way or another linked and form what we call our Environment. Damage to any part means damage to the whole; rejuvenation to one, rejuvenation to all. Involvement at whatever level in environmental affairs means involvement in the multi faceted range of subjects that make up our world. Quite a tall order for a small human being, not for a committed community. In our Ward and in our City and in our small residential community, there are extraordinary people who beaver away making things happen and their dedicated involvement and energy make the impossible possible.
There is a truism that holds that there is no such thing as failure only success in progress and this holds true for this portfolio. Much may still require doing, but much has been done and it will be important and challenging to build on this foundation. So, what can be claimed as positive progress? Perhaps the core improvement is the perception of the work done here by communities in the northern suburbs by the city authorities which has changed from utter disregard to tolerance and support. This change of heart has already made a marked difference in most aspects of local government. There are many examples but an obvious one is the improvement in waste collection, grass cutting and general litter. Relationships have been built up over time that creates greater efficiency in problem solving. Where 2 years ago sewage leaks, water pipe bursts etc needed almost daily reporting along the Braamfontein Spruit, today they are rare and the official response is quick and courteous.
We are indeed privileged to have a dedicated group of voluntary equestrians and Friends of the Delta who care for the unique riverine parkland that borders our suburb. Dog walkers, bike riders, horse riders, bird watchers, runners and walkers all use the open parkland daily and enjoy, amazingly in our violent society, peace of mind due to the marvelous work of the Linden and Parkview police, the City Park Wardens, the Egoli River Rangers and the many other care groups that all play their part to make the area safe and secure.
Social Development, Regional Social Welfare, JMPD, the Police and Park Wardens are focusing attention on a way forward through the minefield of urban vagrancy, homelessness and unemployment that remain urgent challenges for open space usage. A Forum is currently in formation to deal efficiently with the ground root issues of an urban rier environment. Discussions between stakeholders is at an advanced stage to beautify the islands between William Nicol and Jan Smuts Avenue and an interest group is putting together a plan to develop Jan Smuts Avenue into a lovely Boulevard. The Church and Faith groups of all religions have formed an alliance to protect and care for the environment. So add all these together and the sum becomes so much greater than its parts and the way forward is wide open. It will take courage, energy and faith but its looking good.
Please accept this as an invitation to join us at our community market in the Colourful Splendour Nursery at Marlborough Avenue on the second Saturday of every month where you can meet Judy our Ward Councillor, socialize enjoy lovely fresh food, buy interesting craft works, deli, organic veggies. There are pony rides for the children and an art corner run by delightful Obakeng and his local young helpers.
We look forward to seeing you.