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Article by Nampak 15 May 2013

CAN DO! Trekking for Trash duo reach the finish line of their 3 300km seven month trek across SA's shoreline

Two of South Africa’s most inspirational social change adventurers have taken their last steps in the
3300km, seven month CAN DO! Trekking for Trash trek, which began in October 2012. The trek
started in Alexander Bay (Northern Cape, [Status]) and continued along South Africa’s coastline to Kosi Bay
(on the Mozambique border, [Status]).

Michael Baretta and Camilla Howard left the comfort of their homes and lives to pursue their passion
of making a difference through environmental awareness and education. Inspired by a talk they
attended by David Grier in May 2011, (Grier ran a marathon a day along the coast of South Africa
Cipla Miles for Smiles Foundation, [Status]), the pair began planning their adventure 18 months prior to the
trek. Michael took the reins in securing sponsorship using his marketing background, while Camilla
planned the route and logistics. Together, the team embarked on a journey which has changed their
lives forever.

Baretta comments, “The best thing about this journey was being exposed to so many different people
every day. Their views, comments and actions keep influencing my frame of reference and making
me a richer person.” Howard adds, “From the planning phases to the people we've met on the beach -
each person has enriched my life. Most exciting was meeting and spending time with Kingsley
Holgate at his home in Zinkwazi.”

Since the journey began, the duo have visited 15 schools across the country, educating leaners and
local communities about the importance of looking after the environment by eliminating litter, as well
as hosting six community beach clean-up’s and collecting a total of 7 155kg of litter – a significant
achievement for two young individuals.

However, the trek was not without mishaps: Bruised feet, shin splints, plantar fatiitis (inflamed foot
sole, [Status]) and tick bite fever are just some of the obstacles overcome by the eco warriors who trekked
between 20km and 40km a day six days a week. Both admitted they were never tempted to give up
and were inspired by the warm reception they received in small towns along the way. Howard
elaborates, “We have been overwhelmed at the response from the public. Some of the smaller towns
like St Francis Bay, Cannon Rocks and Westbrook really went out of their way to welcome us.”
When asked what the future holds, Baretta smiles, “I have decided to put my skills to good use and to
start my own sponsorship and marketing agency that will specialise in pairing organisations and
individuals, that aim to ‘do good’, with corporate sponsors.”

It seems the adventure continues for Howard, “I will be heading off to the South of France to work for
two months on a contract with Chez Gourmet, a cooking school catering company my mom started 4
years ago. There is potentially another trek on the cards as well as the summit of another continents
highest peak for me!”

Proud sponsors, Nampak Bevcan, Nampak DivFood and Collect-a-Can are pleased to announce that as part of ensuring the sustainability of this initiative, they have launched the CAN DO! Trekking for Trash Fund, which will be managed by Tshikululu, a Corporate Social Investment Fund Management Company; and have pledged R30 000 towards the fund already. Funds raised will go towards environmental education in South Africa and individuals and corporates are encouraged to pledge their support. Back to top ^