Her environmental legacy remains

2009-06-03 00:00

THE recent death of Rosemary Kunene, an acting campaign director for the Keep Pietermaritzburg Clean Association (KPCA), has robbed the community of a highly regarded environmentalist.

Kunene started working for the KPCA 12 years ago. Although she entered the organisation with no qualifications, her enthusiasm for her job led to her enrolling for several cour­ses aimed at enhancing the skills needed to perform her duties optimally. Some of the many courses she completed include a Community Development course from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) and an Environmental Education course from Rhodes University.

Her passion for the environment became more effective when coupled with her qualifications, and she went on to inspire the community by sharing what she had learnt.

She worked extensively with informal traders, formal traders, schools and businesses and taught them how to manage their waste more effectively. She held numerous workshops on topics covered by the EASY Programme (Environmental Awards System for Youth) and promoted the programme vigorously throughout the community.

She used her skills to help benefit the Greater Edendale Development Initiative and educated the community when it came to recycling.

She played a major role in poverty alleviation in the Edendale area and beyond by teaching people how to generate an income through the recycling of waste.

She initiated the “ Time to Shine for 2010 and Beyond” project, with the aim of teaching local residents about effective waste management. She also played an instrumental role in the eco schools programme which looks at educating pupils about the environment.

Six months ago, Kunene was involved in an accident which hospitalised her. She never fully recovered and was in and out of hospital for months while doctors battled to find out the cause of her illness.

Kunene, buried on May 30, and is survived by her husband, five children and four grandchildren. She will be sorely missed.

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