An 83-year-old retired Canadian physician has been cleaning up the beach in Al Mairid area of Ras Al Khaimah on a daily basis.
Dr Rdenek Rokyta has been living in the UAE for 38 years and he is currently based in Ras Al Khaimah.
In an interview with Gulf News, he said he was invited to the country by the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan in 1980 and worked in hospitals in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Ras Al Khaimah.
The Canadian physician, who specialised in gastroenterology, retired after treating patients in his home country and the UAE for 55 years.
Dr Rokyta retired four years ago.
Since then has lived in Al Mairid area, volunteering to clean up the beach daily due to his love to keep the environment clean.
“I am taking care of my mother … Do you know who is my mother?” he asked “The earth is my mother,” he said.
“I consider the earth as my mother and for this reason I have to take care of my mother,” he said.
Dr Rokyta began his volunteering work around eight years ago and his wife helped him in cleaning the beach before she passed away.
“I was attending to patients, but now after retirement, all my attention is to protect the environment and keep it clean,” Dr Rokyta said.
The noble job of the retired physician who loves the environment and the sea has attracted the attention of Al Mairid residents as well as visitors to the beach.
He said: “I used to walk 6km, collecting litter from the beach in the morning and evening.”
He spends several hours every day, in the morning from 6.30am to 8am and in the evening from 5.30pm to 8pm.
Dr Rokyta said he knew Shaikh Zayed very closely and had spent many years with him and met him periodically.
“I love UAE and its citizens … I love their values,” he said.
Recently, a video of Dr Rokyta taken by a policeman went viral on social media. The video clip showed the elderly man holding a plastic bag and collecting garbage from the beach. Social media users thanked him for his remarkable voluntary initiative.
Source: Gulf News