Participants at last year’s Village Pride-Village Wide event. | File
Wednesday, February 22, 2017 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
Organizers of the third annual Village Pride-Village Wide cleanup event, held each spring in Maywood, are looking for sponsors and volunteers ahead of this year’s event, which is set for April 22, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. The event will kickoff at the Reuse Depot, 50 W. Madison St. in Maywood.
“We’re all hands on deck,” said Maywood Environmental and Beautification Commission member Loretta Brown during a Feb. 15 Legal, License and Ordinance Committee (LLOC) meeting.
“We want everybody in the village to participate. The is an opportunity to bring pride to our village. That’s what the goal is,” she said.
Brown recalled one of the commission’s original motives for creating the event three years ago. Since then, it’s evolved into the largest mass cleanup of its kind that’s held in the village.
“We started out just wanting to spruce up the village because people were saying that it was dirty,” she said. “When we talked to people, they had no pride in the village. Our first-year goal was to pick up paper and trash and to spruce the village up a bit. Since then, we’ve [shifted to] wanting to do projects that last for more than just [a day]. We want to do a few long-term projects that last through the whole season.”
Last year, the event, which is sponsored by an array of entities, including Proviso Partners for Health, attracted over 300 participants and a range of sponsors.
“We’re hoping to get just as many, or more, sponsors this year because our goals are bigger and broader,” Brown said. “We’ll need as much support as we can get.”
Brown said that community members are welcome to organize volunteer teams from within their church congregations, workplaces, schools, homes and other vital institutions. Brown said she and her fellow organizers are looking for people to clean up trash, plant flowers, paint and do work on other community projects.
She also advocated for community stakeholders making long-term investments of time, money and resources into different areas of the community.
For instance, Brown said, Maywood’s Quinn Community Center will clean up a park across the street from Lexington Elementary School. But Quinn will do cleaning year-round as well since the community organization recently adopted the park.
“We’ve identified four parks in particular that will be spruced up that day, but we want people to adopt those parks beyond just that day so that the parks can stay clean,” she said.
The event organizers are also asking that participants pre-register for the event by filling out a one-minute survey here. Please respond by April 15th.
Maywood Environmental and Beautification Commission seeking volunteers, possible members
The Maywood Environmental and Beautification Commission — the voluntary body that is responsible for advising the Maywood Board of Trustees on matters related to the local environment and the village’s general physical appearance — is looking for community members with particular skill-sets who may be interested in either serving as commission members or volunteering on projects and/or committees.
During a Feb. 15 LLOC meeting, Laura Lange, the commissioner’s chairwoman, said that the 7-member commissioner currently has four active members. In order to have a quorum, all four of those active members must be present. This month, Lange said, the commission didn’t meet because two members were out sick.
“[The lack of active members] has really cost us in terms of momentum and energy with which to accomplish some of the goals we’re tasked with,” Lange said, adding that the commission is looking for people with knowledge and expertise in a variety of areas, such as marketing, building science, renewable energy and waste management.
Lange said that the commission is also seeking community members who may want to volunteer on committees or projects; rather than serve on the committee itself.
“Someone who joins a committee or helps support a project is thinking more along the lines of how are we going to do this particular task,” she said, adding that committee and project volunteers would be responsible for helping to implement certain individual projects or initiatives, such as the annual Village Pride-Village Wide cleanup event and planting community gardens. VFP