IN an effort to spread the gospel of good sanitation, hygiene and recycling, the Sigatoka Town Council has started an environmental outreach program designed to educate Laselase villagers on the importance and benefits of healthy living.
Council's chief executive officer Anand Sami Pillay said the decision to host the program stemmed from the fact that the villagers were not aware of the reuse, reduce and recycle program (3R) and village waste had been identified as one of the contributors of pollution to the Sigatoka River.
"Impromptu dump sites are a concern because rubbish collects along the riverbanks and wash out to sea," he said.
"Stray dogs at the village feed from rubbish pits and trail litter which often includes soiled diapers through the village, which is a potential health hazard."
Mr Pillay said the council hoped to create an environmentally conscious village through the health outreach program.
Meanwhile, a clean school program conducted by the council has also reaped early benefits, with a marked change in behaviour and attitude towards littering by students and the teaching faculty of eight schools in Sigatoka.
"All schools involved started recycling and composting and managed to raise funds by selling recyclables and organic vegetables grown by the children with the assistance of teachers," said Mr Pillay.