A group of 36 Pen-Hi students will come together April 21 at 11:30 a.m. to clean up trash around the city for Earth Day.
The event, organized by Grade 12 students Alex and Rachel Jung, Maya Bassot, Lindsay Spear and Nicole Samberger, was inspired as a way to give back to community during COVID-19 when more people are spending time outdoors.
The graduating class of Pen-Hi has held Earth Day clean-ups in years past but in recent years that fell by the wayside. The new Earth Day clean-up hopes to bring back that tradition.
The 36 student volunteers will be organized into groups of four for social distancing purposes. The groups will aim to clean up many different parts of Penticton including Gyro Park, the Art Gallery, Okanagan Beach, the KVR Trail and more.
Rachel said, as a young person, taking care of the environment is at the top her priorities. “It’s really important, obviously the earth is getting warmer and the environment is getting impacted a lot,” she said.
Environmental concerns have taken a backseat during the pandemic, Rachel said. However climate change is still an ongoing issue and Rachel hopes to remind people of how important it is to take it seriously, get involved and treat the earth like you care about it.
“Especially in the Okanagan, it’s such a beautiful place,” she said. “But it’s so often littered with cigarette butts and garbage and that can be really harmful to the environment.”
Due to COVID-19 distancing, the event organizers ask that no one else volunteers to help out during the clean up but instead does their part to keep Penticton and the Okanagan clean by not littering and adopting environmentally friendly practices.