California’s leading green nonprofit takes on a public space cleanup in the Bay Area.
Kids are sticklers. At least when it comes to making sure parents abide by their own rules. And that is what Keep California Beautiful Executive Director Christine Flowers is banking on as she finalizes plans for this year’s America Recycles Day event in San Francisco. “If you teach the kids, they’ll teach their parents,” Flowers says. “We’re going to have information about recycling; we’re going to have tents and games, but it’s really just a great way for families to get engaged and learn the basic things that they can do to make a difference.” For the first time, KCB is teaming up with local organizations and asking volunteers to pull out their work gloves and buckets for a public space cleanup in celebration of ARD. Popular sites within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park may appear clean, but along Crissy Field’s paths and buried within the shoreline of Aquatic Park beach are countless cigarette butts, plastic scraps and old fishing lines. The Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park Volunteer Office and Aquarium of the Bay are just a few of the groups helping to rotate participants between the plant removal and trail upkeep in the Presidio gardens and waste collection near the beach. Recycling, trash and compost bins will also be installed as a way to continue giving back to the community long after the event ends. Flowers is particularly excited for the involvement of the East Coast-based Rozalia Project and its underwater, trash-collecting machine, ROV. Volunteers will get a front-row view of the marine vehicle’s real-time video capabilities and help sort through the debris scooped up from the sea floor — a hands-on experience that Flowers believes captures ARD’s mission. “We’ve learned once people have been engaged and have personally taken action, they will go on to make behavioral changes in their own lives,” Flowers explains. “We need to tie it back to the individual because every day should be America Recycles Day. Every day people should be trying to do something good for the environment.” Want to find ARD events closer to you? Head to the America Recycles Day website to learn more, and check out 1-800-RECYCLING’s America Recycles Day page.