Franklin Township makes a push for April 22 community cleanup
● By J. Chambless
By John Chambless
Six years ago, Cyndi Yurkovich just wanted to help make Franklin Township a cleaner place. On April 22, she's asking again for community support to help clean up trash and debris along the township's roads, and there's a big push to get the word out.
“Last year we had more youth participants than in years past,” Yurkovich wrote last week in an email to the Chester County Press. “These teenage kids were looking for community service hours. We were thrilled to have them, and the township provides a letter of participation to these kids; however, adult and family participation has lagged.”
Advance sign-up isn't required, she said. “It’s always nice to know how many people are attending, but people can just show up. We will have assignments, but if people have identified an area that they would like to clean up, they are welcome to do that. We are hoping that subdivisions will want to clean up their developments and the roads surrounding them.”
All ages can participate, she said. “We prefer that young children are not on main roads unless they are in a large group who have identified a traffic watch person to be alert for cars,” Yurkovich added. “The event runs from 8 a.m. to noon. People can participate as long as they’d like. One hour, two hours – the entire time – any contribution of time and energy makes a difference.”
Board of Supervisors member Penny Schenk has been helping organize this year's event, and wrote last week that, “the township supplies safety vests, gloves, trash bags, and bottled water. These items will be available for pick-up the week prior to the cleanup, and also the morning of the cleanup at the Township Building.
“I would suggest that anyone who wishes to participate with younger children do so in one of the township preserves or the park, for safety reasons,” Schenk added. “We also have dirt and gravel roads in the township that would be suitable for supervised younger volunteers. Filled bags can either be brought back to the Township Building and placed in the dump truck provided, or the volunteers can leave the bags in a pile along the roadside and notify the township of the location, and a pickup truck will be sent out to collect them.
“Last year, my neighborhood cleaned our road as a group,” Schenk wrote. “It was a great opportunity to spend time together, catch up with each other, and do something good for the community.”
The benefits of the cleanup go beyond making the township more attractive, Yurkovich said. “At the start of the cleanup, participants have an enormous sense of community spirit – they are excited to begin and make their mark,” she wrote. “After every event, the participants have an enormous sense of community pride because they are the ones responsible for making the township trash-free and beautiful. The younger participants are especially excited about their contribution to the community and have a strong sense of accomplishment. And we also feel that good deeds are contagious. Maybe the community cleanup will inspire kids and adults to continue on and clean up somewhere else that needs it.”
The Franklin Township cleanup will be held April 22 from 8 a.m. to noon (rain date April 23). For information, visit the township website at www.franklintownship.us.
To contact Staff Writer John
Chambless, email firstname.lastname@example.org.