by Katherine Fillmore
The Hennops River continues to gift me with beautiful human interactions and growth. Today I met with Gareth Bryce Hansen - an active river warrior - to walk the section of the Hennops River near SuperSport Park. He is conducting ongoing walks of the area preceding the healing awareness and clean event Fresh.ngo is organizing over the weekend of September 27th-29th.
To be relied upon river warrior journalist from the Centurion Rekord Newspaper, Bennitt B Bartl, also joined us to cover yet another story on the plight of the Hennops River. Thank you Bennitt , your stories hold power to bring about healing change.
I often resist going to Centurion and it is really sad as there is one massively beautiful river flowing through there, that if clean and protected, would turn Centurion into a complete haven.
What a river we have and how majestic it would be as a place of recreational interaction with nature. Tragically it is completely neglected and abused with open manholes lining the lengths of its banks. There is so much rubbish caught up in the trees and banks it is suffocating. We came across a page torn out of the bible with the title ‘Priests as Teachers’ and a reference to Deuteronomy 33:10. ‘They will teach your ordinances to Jacob, and your law to Israel. They will offer incense as a pleasant aroma to you and a whole burnt offering upon your altar.’ This is the blessing Moses bestowed upon Israelites before his death. A clean Hennops River will be a huge blessing for this country and its people.
Poignantly sticking out of a pile of rubble was an old calendar titled ‘Portraits of Wildlife’. Humanity has to watch its act to protect nature so that it is not a distant memory captured in photos. We need to get together as a big group and rise against this destruction. A lion’s roar from the public is what it will take to get this problem sorted. Active involvement and constant input. Arriving at the clean ups and uniting as a team.
A clear spring flowing into the Hennops shows the stark reality of the destruction of this water source. Pure and clear turning sewage brown as it links to the Hennops. The image of this gift of water being completely tarnished can make one cry.
On our walk we came across Tshwane Municipal workers cutting the grass and Gareth asked them who is responsible for clearing the plastic away exposed by the cut grass. They were hesitant to give us a number but once we explained what we were doing and shared their mindset they warmed with one worker saying ‘Water is Life’. Yes this river is life and one we need to cherish.