Scotia resident Nathan Glass says he needs all the help he can get when it comes to his passion for getting litter off village streets.
To that end, Glass started The Neighborhood Environmental Coalition with his wife, Stefanie, in April. He said the goal is to bring awareness to what he calls a littering situation in Scotia. The couple feel the best way to attack the issue is to lead by example, and they do so by hitting the streets, picking up litter twice a month. Their hope is that this will encourage businesses and homeowners to do their part to help keep Scotia clean.
`To date we have 12 volunteers, some from other towns, and have picked up more than 200 pounds of garbage off the streets and sidewalks. Our evening ‘pick-ups’ take one hour, twice a month, and the difference is clear to see.
We encourage children attend, as it is a casual affair,` said Glass.
Glass said his group is low-key, and their general rule is if volunteers can make it, then they make it. They are also hoping to secure donations to cover the costs of bags and gloves, and the group is actively working to get sponsors.
`I am encouraged by the response so far and can’t wait to see what the future holds for the Neighborhood Environmental Coalition,` said Glass.
Glass attended a Scotia board meeting Wednesday, July 9, and told village officials about his group’s efforts and hopes for the future. He told the board that in addition to his efforts to clean up the streets, he would also like to see something happen with trail restoration and preservation. He said he is also working to get community youth involved as part of building cleaner future for people like his newborn daughter.
`As far as children go, we encourage families to join us. My 4-month-old daughter is our hardest and most dedicated volunteer. I also am trying to coordinate with the Boy and Girl Scouts, as well as the GIVE organization at Scotia High. I could use all the help I can get,` said Glass.
Village Trustee Armon Benny said he hopes that more people help the group because it falls under the village’s efforts to spruce up the streets. Benny said the board has focused a lot of attention recently on efforts to improve the health, safety and property values in Scotia. This includes attention to neglected properties.
`It is quite a list we are working on, but there is only so much that can be accomplished by government alone. The Neighborhood Environmental Coalition is a fantastic group working to help our village improve itself,` said Benny. `They deserve much publicity and much credit for their actions and efforts on behalf of each of us in the Village of Scotia. We are very fortunate to have residents who want to help and who get involved on their own initiative.`