Rotarians and volunteers rolled out across Nanaimo and tossed trash to the heap in a spring cleaning this weekend.
Organized by Rotary Clubs in Nanaimo and Lantzville, an Earth Day cleanup was held across the city Saturday, April 22, with the Northfield Road visitors’ centre the base of operations.
Evelyn Boegh, Nanaimo Rotary Daybreak Club member and co-organizer, said she’s seen “anything and everything” brought in.
“Shopping carts, of course, all kinds of clothing, paper, plastic, Styrofoam, metal, it’s just astonishing the things that you find out there,” she said.
Rebecca Taylor, Rotary Club of Nanaimo president-elect and co-organizer, said there were standard items collected from the Diver Lake area.
“It was more household garbage in the area we were in, but certainly we took out some shopping carts and some larger items as well,” said Taylor.
Madison Makepeace, Nanaimo Rotaract Club co-president, said there was a lot of food-related waste collected.
“There was a lot of Tim Hortons and fast food garbage,” said Makepeace. “It was a great day.”
The Daybreak club holds its own cleanups during the year and Boegh said there are areas where more refuse seems to accumulate.
“Tenth Street is probably one of the worst, but that’s because there’s the recycle centre and a garbage area,” said Boegh. “If the wind is blowing and people are unloading things from their vehicle, then it blows all over the place.”
The event adheres to Rotary’s “service above self” motto, according to Boegh.
“We’re celebrating Earth Day,” she said. “We’ve always been aware of our community. Nanaimo is one of the best places in the world to live and we all love being here, but for Rotary, our primary goals are to help others and help the Earth, so this is what we do.”
About 2,200 pounds of garbage was collected last year. Numbers for this year are still being tallied, but “a few thousand pounds” are estimated to have been collected, according to Taylor.