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Y's Teen Achievers clean up county
Keep Liberty Beautiful
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Teen Achievers make their ‘mark’ on litter prevention and water pollution. - photo by Photo provided.
We have had a number of teens work on different projects this summer for Keep Liberty Beautiful. It is nice to know there are many youth out there who are willing to give of their personal time to try to make their world better.
That should remind us older folks that we need to leave the world better for these coming generations. The decisions we make and actions we take now have a significant impact on what their lives will be like in the next several decades. Thankfully, youth groups, like the Teen Achievers sponsored by the YMCA, are already looking for ways to make their community healthier and cleaner.
Not only have these kids adopted several streets around the Y to clean up litter regularly, they have also helped with two other Keep Liberty Beautiful projects. Teen Achievers helped do a cigarette litter scan recently in downtown Hinesville as part of a small extension grant from Keep America Beautiful to help prevent cigarette litter. Last summer, with the help of downtown merchants, we gave out more than 1,000 ashtrays to smokers, set up 25 ash receptacles around the area, and held an awareness campaign on the negative impact of this nasty litter. As part of the project, we scanned the area before and after the pick-up. The post-scan demonstrated that there had been a 40 percent reduction in the amount of litter. This a pre-scan showed the 40 percent reduction evidently held.
We appreciate the Teen Achievers for helping with this scan. Have you ever tried to pick up cigarette butts? It is time consuming and gross. Couple that with a hot sun and paved streets and sidewalks and you know this is not a fluff project.
According to Keep American Beautiful, smokers litter about 4.5 trillion cigarette butts yearly. Please check out and which help communities reduce cigarette litter. And keep those butts off our streets!
In conjunction with this project, the teens also did a stormwater drain stenciling project around the YMCA. These stencils are put in place to remind citizens that litter and other debris that ends up on the pavement usually washes down storm drains to our waterways. One of the best ‘recipes’ for polluted water is stormwater pollution. Take one part pavement and one part wind and rain, mix it with litter and debris on sidewalks and streets and the rain just washes this stuff right down into creeks and streams. With the right mix of ingredients the litter continues to pollute waters as it flows from those streams to rivers and the ocean.
The Teens Achievers secured the attractive decal reminders to a number of storm drains around Mary Lou and Patriot’s Trail near Peacock Canal so please mind the message: Don’t litter and don’t pollute our waters!
We would like to thank all of our partners at the YMCA and, particularly, Thea Mumcelli, Rachela Lawrence, Nathaniel Fields, Chanelle Craig, Brandee Craig, Reginald Brown, Warner McCray, Jordan Harper, Symone Wright, Keithra Moolenaar, and Sharod Johnson. Great work!

Aug. 19, 8:30 a.m. Litter Enforcement Training. For more information or to reserve space, contact 368 4888 or
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