On Tuesday, October 11, The Island School community including Deep Creek Middle School and Early Learning Center students and staff, research staff from the Cape Eleuthera Institute and Ben Dougherty, CEO and Head of Schools, teamed up with Clean Beaches Eleuthera to clean up Cotton Bay Beach in Wemyss Bight. 

Plastic waste is an ongoing problem in The Bahamas and other Small Island Developing States. These small island states bear the brunt of marine based plastic which continues to pollute our oceans at an alarming rate. Plastic waste washes onto the shores of our beaches and litters the coastline, yet the small island states are also challenged without infrastructure and systems to sustainably manage the waste that the shorelines collect. This affects both the marine environment as well as the island communities.

A spirit of camaraderie permeated the Cotton Bay Beach clean up as students, staff, and community members worked side by side for a shared purpose; to keep our beautiful beaches clean. Mr Eric Wallace, of Clean Beaches Eleuthera, reported that as a result of our combined efforts, in just two hours, we removed 395 pounds of trash from Cotton Bay Beach. 

Wallace, the leader of Clean Beaches Eleuthera, reflected on the day and thanked everyone for their efforts. “I was proud to see all of the students getting involved, and as a result of our concerted efforts we removed 395 Pounds of Beach Trash. This brings our total cleanup amount to 4,570 pounds since inception in April.”

In addition to cleaning a beautiful beach and supporting our community, the event also reinforced our efforts in recycling, reusing and repurposing materials that we practice and discuss daily in our school settings. At DCMS, students have created a community recycling station that processes their daily waste, but also invites others in the community to participate in recycling aluminium cans, glass bottles, and batteries. 

DCMS plans to continue their beach cleanups throughout the year and will welcome others to join them when the next event is planned.