The big day is right around the corner.
The inaugural Comox Valley Community Clean-Up goes Saturday and as it stands there are some 60 people who have expressed interest in helping out.
For anyone unfamiliar with the day, here’s a brief overview.
The whole idea was sparked by Scott Stanfield’s March 19 article, Illegal back road dumping ‘starting to get out of hand’.
Those responding to the article through social media, phone calls to the paper and letters was proof enough to us at the Record that the citizens of the Comox Valley are mad as hell and they aren’t going to take it anymore.
We publicized the idea of doing something about the problem and the initial reaction was great.
Now it’s time to uphold your promises.
We will meet Saturday morning, between 8 and 8:30 a.m. at the lower level meeting room of the Courtenay and District Fish & Game Club, where teams will be assigned for clean-up duty at some of the areas in the Comox Valley’s back roads most desperately in need of a cleaning.
We have volunteers coming with trucks and flatbeds, Din’s Bins is supplying a couple of big bins to help with the hauling, the Fish & Game Club has graciously donated hall space.
Now all we need is all the elbow grease we can muster.
For anyone planning to come out, please wear appropriate clothing; we promise you’re going to get dirty.
Bring an empty garbage receptacle if you have one. It makes for easier pick-up of the smaller items. Bring work/garden gloves, if you have them.
This clean-up is about as grassroots as it gets. It’s about us, as citizens, doing something tangible to address a situation.
We have a few specific locations to tackle and the plan is to put in a good three to four hours of work and call it a day.
We have received calls at the Record from people who would like to participate in a clean-up, but are looking for something more urban. We have a solution for that.
Saint Andrew’s Cemetery is looking for volunteers to help with its annual spring clean-up, Saturday from 9-noon. Bring work gloves, a rake, water, a hat and wear some sunscreen and work clothes to the cemetery, halfway up the hill on the Old Island Highway, on your way to Comox Valley Dodge.
Another option is to take it upon yourselves to pick a public spot near your own home – a road, a beach, a walking trail or a park – and fill a garbage bag. Imagine if everyone in the Comox Valley filled just one garbage bag, and included it with your next scheduled garbage pick-up. There would be an extra 60,000 bags of garbage.
Dreaming? Of course I am. I’m dreaming of a cleaner community, and it all starts this Saturday.
Hopefully the 2015 Comox Valley Community Clean-Up is the start of something huge.
Hopefully, 10 years down the line, everyone who is involved on Saturday can look back and say “remember when there were only 60 of us participating?”
Hopefully there comes a time when everyone thinks twice about illegal dumping, or tossing fast food wrappings out the window of a moving car, or emptying an ash tray into a parking lot.
But for now, I will be happy with a few extra loads to the landfill. Please join us.
Terry Farrell is the editor of the Comox Valley Record