My youngest was just 4 years old when I started this project and this July he'll turn 8. He's grown up so much... and over these past years has been part of creating a major MAJOR change in our community. And while he may not know how big of a role he played, he is seeing first hand the difference that has been made.
He remembers when picking up littered cigarette butts on the beach was never ending.... when we would just sit down and pick up hundreds. I remember it all too well, but there is no better jog of the memory than looking back on beach cleanups from years past. (Reference: February 2011 and February 2012). With the passing of the Wrightsville Beach smoke-free beach ordinance... those days seem to be behind us. Sure, there are still people who smoke on the beach, but it seems that they are few and far between. Case in point, today we only picked up 12.
And while the dolphins serve as a beautiful reminder as to why we do our best to help protect and cleanup our world; the reduction in the amount of cigarette butts we're finding serves as a reminder as to what can happen when we take action because we believe we can make a difference.
“It's the action, not the fruit of the action, that's important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there'll be any fruit. But that doesn't mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
20 minutes on February 22, 2014 at Access 43
Litter by weight: 2 lbs 2.3 oz
Cigarette butts: 12
Total cigarette butts removed: 57,696