Cleaning up our streets

Dear Editor:

My name is Whitney Sanchez and my husband, son, and I have lived in south St. Petersburg for five years, and we love living in the up and coming area. It’s a perfect location with a handful of top-ranked schools and has immense potential for whatever the general public wants it to be.

A downfall of living in our area is the tremendous amounts of trash that cover our streets. Every time I enter our neighborhood from the interstate or from16th Street South, I can’t help but notice a plethora of trash that litters our streets.

It’s such an eyesore, and for me, it’s embarrassing for visitors to have to see our streets lined with garbage. You can’t have much talk without action and expect results, so I felt the need to organize a community trash pick up to make the streets of south St Pete clean again.

This was once a beautiful place to live, and I feel like it’s up to the residents to make it and keep it that way!

With the assistance of Keep Pinellas Beautiful, organizing this event went much smoother. They provided all the supplies necessary for a successful cleanup and are an amazing resource.

Our first event was July of last year, and we had a total of 13 volunteers, four of them being our youth. In total, the trash picked up off the streets weighed 157.73 pounds. Our clean up this past May had a total of 29 volunteers with 15 being our youth! The total amount of trash gathered was 254.24 pounds!

The 148.50 volunteer hours contributed to cleaning our neighborhoods. The most exciting part of this cleanup was seeing our youth come out and take responsibility for their community. It’s vital for them to know how important it is to know your neighbor, and I think this is a great way to start!

A big thanks to Sigma Beta for leading our young boys in the right direction and assisting in instilling morals and values in them. There’s so much positivity happening in and around our neighborhoods, and I think this is a wonderful round of applause to our village that’s out there making a positive difference.

I could not have made this day happen by myself, and I want to send a major thank you to Keep Pinellas Beautiful, St. Pete Time Bank, Somerset Lodge 474 and my fellow neighbors.

This won’t be the last clean up, and I look forward to meeting more new faces each time. It takes a village in every aspect of life. Will you be a part of it?

Whitney Sanchez

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