Student tackles trash


The Tamahere Reserve’s rubbish burden is significantly lighter thanks to St Peters School student Ollie McGahey.

Ollie undertook a school project to investigate the rubbish around Tamahere and how the community might address the problem.

He soon found that one way to tackle the problem was to get stuck in himself.

Ollie McGahey with his parents Marnie and Dean removed five bags of rubbish from Tamahere Reserve

Leo Koppens of the Tamahere Mangaone Restoration Trust was very willing to offer Ollie an example of one of Tamahere’s rubbish problems. The Tamahere Reserve, which borders Tauwhare Rd, is plagued by fly-tippers and litterers dumping everything from residential rubbish bags to commercial waste.

On a recent Saturday, Ollie and his parents Marnie and Dean McGahey got a firsthand look at the issue and spent several hours removing trash.

Their efforts netted five household rubbish bags worth of trash much to Koppens’ delight.

As part of his project Ollie questioned who dumped the rubbish and why and who was responsible for removing it.

Koppens told Ollie that he would be doing everyone a great service if he could determine why people littered.

“You may want to analyse the rubbish you pick up and see where it comes from,” he suggested.

Removing rubbish from the reserve is a never ending battle for trust members but periodically they get some help.

Two years ago, a group of geocachers spent a day hauling a huge pile of rubbish from the reserve.

Geocaching is an outdoor, hide-and-seek game which uses GPS-enabled devices such as smart phones or a hand-held GPS to find a geocache or container hidden at the location by fellow gamers. They have sites in the Tamahere Reserve.

One of their other activities is Cache in Trash Out (CITO), an environmental initiative supported by the worldwide geocaching community.

To offer help to the Tamahere Reserve email Leo Koppens or phone 07-856-3245.

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One thought on “Student tackles trash

  • February 2, 2018 at 5:12 pm


    I was walking near the Narrows and saw some rubbish (including a letterbox!) and picked it up.


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