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Interested in Community Action? Interested in cross-cultural teamwork?

Do yourself a favour, view this film: 'Taking Back Our Beach

This is an important film. The Mercury Bay Cinema Theatre. Cinema One was full last Sunday, 19 November, to view the first screening and talk with the producer Anton Steel.

It tells the story of the wreck of the container ship Rena Wednesday, 5 October 2011. The ship was wrecked on the Astrolabe Reef off the Bay of Plenty. Rena was carrying 1368 containers and 200 tonnes of marine diesel oil. This oil leaked into the ocean which in turned fouled many beaches and the Māori settlement on Motiti Island.

The initial wreck was horrific, which in time became worse, disaster on disaster until the ship broke in two. The remnant of the wreck remains there and will be there forever.

The film tells the story of the heroic efforts of thousands of people to clean up the beaches and save the remnant of sea life that could be saved. What was not so inspiring is the record of slow-to-act government officials and departments and flustered politicians. The wreck was unprecedented, and no effective plans were in place to deal with it.

The heroes of this story were ordinary people, people from all walks of life, Māori and Pakeha working together. For a long time, there was no organization – no bosses and workers – no cultural difference - just people doing what they could alongside other people doing what they could. This was grass roots in action. The film tells the story of what a community can do when they work together united, in the face of a common enemy.

The film is showing this Wednesday, 22 November 12.15pm; Friday, 24 November,11.00am; Saturday, 25 November, 3.15pm. Tuesday 28 November , 7.30pm. The film will be showing for some time so check with Mercury Bay Twin Cinemas - 07 867 1001 – for future screening times or go online to Mercury Bay Twin Cinemas to book.

Caption: The wreck of the Rena

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