North Bay environmental action group continues to clean city streets through community clean-up challenge
The environmental action group Clean, Green, Beautiful North Bay is wrapping up its last major beautification initiative for the season on Saturday.
Armed with litter bags and trash tongs, the clean up crews were out in different areas around the city cleaning up disposed litter.
“I’ve been seeing a lot of garbage around the city and it’s nice to be out with a group making the city cleaner,” said volunteer April McCrum
Throughout the summer, Clean, Green Beautiful North Bay has been hosting different kinds of beautification challenges to encourage people to take care of the environment. The major push is the community-wide clean up.
“We want to have one great day where we’re absolutely litter free,” said the group’s chair Hariett Madigan. “Our job is to spread the word of kindness to our environment.”
Those choosing to volunteer can pick up bags at Main St. and pick up trash in their neighbourhood, from nearby park, or other areas.
Every bag that is collected, volunteers’ name is entered in a draw to win prizes like gift cards or Muskoka Chairs.
“I heard they were cleaning up the city and I thought it was a wonderful idea so I thought I’d put in my 1-3 hours,” said volunteer Mike Gelinas.
The most common things found include single-use plastics, coffee cups, and all types of garbage that is not disposed of properly.
“We make quite a difference in the appearance in our city when we do this,” explained Matthew Robertson who has been volunteering with the group since June.
Throughout the entire summer, 8,000 litter bags were handed out and returned full to the brim with trash.
“When you have a clean, green city, there’s less crime and there’s more stewardship and community engagement,” explained Madigan.
The organization plans to enter the city in the 2022 Communities in Bloom competition which judges municipalities, provincially, and nationally based on a number of criteria. These criteria include community appearance, heritage conservation, urban forestry, landscape, and floral displays and environmental action.
“I think it’s possible to win,” said McCrum. “With all of the community coming out and helping out, for sure it’s doable.”
To win that award, the group hopes that picking up litter will create a healthy, safe city to live in.