Issue of December 31, 2017
Mt. Province

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Youth group helps clean up tourist trash in city CBD
by Hanna C. Lacsamana

A group of young individuals all the way from some provinces of the Ilocos region are in the country’s Summer Capital these holidays to help in cleaning up the clutter around its main thoroughfares.

The youths, who are members of the United Methodist Church in Ilocos provinces, Pangasinan, and their counterparts in the city, were spotted early Friday morning armed with recycled trash bags and picking up trashes scattered on the walkways and plant boxes around Burnham Park.

The litter they were picking up were aside from the high pile of garbage already collected moments earlier by the General Services Office truck along Jose Abad Santos Drive near Harrison Road, presumably accumulated after a night of jam-packed tourists at the park and Harrison night market.

Divine Pearl L. Almeron, a UMC deaconess, said the volunteer deed is one of the traditional daily activities done by the church youth members of the UMC Northwest Philippines Annual Conference, called Christmas Institute or gathering of all its local churches, every Dec. 26 until the holidays’ end.

While picking up litter around, the group members at the same time conduct a “witnessing blitz,” where they approach people they meet on the way, pray for and with them, and then invite them to join in their clean-up activity, regardless of church affiliation.

Almeron said the church has been holding the activity for decades now in fulfillment of its mission of “making members for the transformation of the world.”

Asked about her thoughts on finding scattered garbage in the area, she noted on the need to add more trash bins around the park, which was visibly lacking in the area where they started picking up litter.

“People pass this area, so we suggest putting more garbage bins here. Kasi ‘yung mga tao po talaga magtatapon na lang kung saan-saan kasi wala silang nakikitang pagtatapunan ng basura,” Almeron said.

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