Group 1 – Al Jazair Beach Clean-Up
Muath Al Khalifa
Brief description of the project:
Our event is community service project to clean-up one of Bahrain’spublic beaches. The beach we chose was Aljazair Beach for our childhood attachment to it and memories of being taken there as kids. The main focus is to promote the sense of the community coming together to keep a clean and hygienic environment in Bahrain, especially in public recreational locations.
Brief description of the charity
The purpose of our project was to shed light on the importance of protecting Bahrain’s natural and communal areas. Giving back to our community and environment was the driver behind our project. Public recreational areas always tend to suffer from neglect and misuse. The actions of a few people harm the image of the country and make it difficult for the masses to enjoy the public areas in the Kingdom. As a result, we focused on providing a social service by bringing the community together with a message of keeping our country clean. Bahrain Down Syndrome Society (BDSS) joined us on our event and the kids enjoyed the day out in the beautiful weather as much as we did.
Factual analysis of success in terms of project objectives
Despite having practically two weeks to propose, organize, and implement our event, the turnout exceeded our expectations. Initially, given the time of year, weather is very unpredictable. To make things worse, the day before was cloudy and rainy causing further concerns that the cleanup would not be a success. The higher the number that attend, the more area we would be able to cover. Thankfully, we successfully covered almost 1 kilometer of beach in 2 hours time with approximately 80 attendees.
Highlight of our campaign was Bahrain TV covering the event and compiling a 3 minute video that was shown on national television to spread our message of keeping Bahrain clean.
Lessons learned about managing projects:
Keep it simple: Any project, regardless of how simple it may seem at the start, ends up being much more complicated than expected. The details that need attention and are crucial to the success of the project must be tackled one at a time in an orderly manner.
Plan it well & Communicate effectively: Use work breakdown structures and allocate resources efficiently. Through work breakdown structures and brainstorming using “sticky notes” different group members come up with different ideas key to the success of the event. Each item needs to be organized properly and implemented in an orderly manner. For example, approvals and coordination between the various entities to understand what are the resources supplied and what resources need to be acquired. Another example is you cannot start purchasing things required unless you get a sponsor on-board and know exactly how much they are ready to contribute with.
Do not procrastinate: Procrastination is the most dangerous and hurdle. Specially given we had just over 2 weeks to plan and implement, there is absolutely no time to waste. From day one everyone had to contact his or her sources and get the ball rolling otherwise time just passes by so quickly.
Advice for future teams doing similar projects:
Open communication: Every person & every idea counts. You must begin with meeting, discussing, brainstorming, and researching. Communicate openly with one another to develop a workable goal to be achieved.
Look within: Start by thinking how you can capitalize on existing networks within your group. From obtaining approvals, to being snacks and refreshments, networks are extremely crucial.
Do NOT waste time: Every minute counts and times is a one-way highway. The event date is closer than it appears; do not waste time procrastinating or postponing. Spend as much as time as required to plan and plan well.
Keep it as simple as possible: Organizing an event is never an easy endeavor to undertake. The complexities that arise when dealing with the fine details are difficult to foresee and tackle. The more parties involved, the more complicated the event becomes. Hence keep it as simple as possible, towards the end you will realize that what you initially thought was easy is not so.