Clean Up Jakarta

Third Annual City-Wide Cleanup to Take Place in October, With 20,000 Volunteers

On the morning of Sunday, October 18th 2015, we will see Jakarta citizens carrying out the Indonesian tradition of gotongroyong by picking up rubbish and cleaning up the capital together in the third annual ‘Clean Up Jakarta Day’. The aim of the clean-up is to educate people about the detrimental effects of littering, and in turn spark an awareness of the importance of the three Rs: reduce, reuse, and recycle.

The second Clean Up Jakarta Day took place in October 2014, where 5,000 volunteers at 27 locations around Jakarta showed up at the crack of dawn to get their hands dirty, showing that the spirit of teamwork (gotongroyong) is still very much alive. This year’s clean-up will be held on Sunday October 18th and is set to be much bigger, with an estimated 20,000 volunteers joining together to raise awareness of Jakarta’s rubbish problems.

“Clean Up Jakarta Day plays the role of a platform for all the communities out there to join together on one special day,” says Angela Richardson, Founder and Chief Coordinator of Clean Up Jakarta Day. “Many great organizations run their own clean-ups throughout the year, and we call on them all, including schools and companies, to join forces on October 18th with one united voice, for a cleaner Jakarta.”

Volunteers of all ages and nationalities, local and expatriate, are encouraged to join. “I thought I was the only one volunteering by myself, but it turns out many people were,” says LyanaMargareth, who volunteered in 2013 and 2014 and works as a banker in Jakarta. “It gives me hope that the community is now taking action to improve life in Jakarta.”

Another volunteer, RatnaSivitri, expressed an eye-opening experience. “I never thought I would feel so much from doing something so little.”

Each site is headed up by a Team Leader, being the point of contact to Clean Up Jakarta Day, responsible for recruiting and managing volunteers, and ensuring rubbish collected is left at the designated pick up point to be collected by DinasKebersihan DKI Jakarta.

Many schools have already signed up to this year’s event, where students are able to take part and give back to their local communities, while learning about recycling and having fun at the same time. Businesses are also key players, and this year the likes of The Body Shop Indonesia, PT Adaro Energy and Grandkemang Hotel have signed up their own sites in the heart of Jakarta, open for the public to join. Communities are also onboard:, Indorelawan, Waste4Change, Indonesia Diet KantongPlastik will be running sites in downtown Sudirman.

Rubbish on the day will be separated into bags of recyclable and non-recyclable material, and the recyclables will be donated to waste banks (bank sampah) across Jakarta. Non-recyclable rubbish will be picked up DinasKebersihan DKI Jakarta and taken to the appropriate rubbish tip. Waste from sites in Tangerang will be collected by Abu&Co., a non-governmental waste management company, who will further sort, recycle, compost and incinerate the remaining waste.

Reused sugar sacks are donated by Coca Cola Amatil and volunteers will all be wearing safety gloves sponsored by Kaercher Indonesia.

Directly after the cleaning activities, Clean Up Jakarta Day will host a Post Event for volunteers to congregate and share in their experiences. Influential keynote speakers will present on the topic of waste management and change.

Clean Up Jakarta Day is organized by Indonesia Expat, a free English bi-weekly publication in circulation since July 2009.

To volunteer and for more information, please visit or email [email protected]. It’s gotongroyong time!

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