Local teamwork pays off

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On April 14, more than 100 volunteers joined Turn Back The Block and the Harrisburg-West End Neighborhood Association in the first Harrisburg Clean and Green Day, sponsored by Knology and the Outdoor Channel.

This event was a beautiful example of collaboration between public and private entities. Members of HWENA, led by President Phil Williams, identified the streets, alleys and lots to be addressed. The city’s Department of Environmental Services provided the roll-off containers, garbage bags and tire removal. The Department of Licensing and Inspection handled the notification of property owners of identified lots, and then both departments arranged for those lots to be tackled by the city in advance. The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office sent out an extra patrol for the day. Knology orchestrated the registration process and provided lunch for all.

Volunteers ranged from Harrisburg residents to citizens of Columbia County, from church and school groups to politicians. One Heritage Academy student summed it up this way: “I really like doing things like this. It just makes me feel good.”

On behalf of Turn Back The Block, I thank everyone who volunteered their time and services to clean the streets of Harrisburg, a neighborhood whose vitality
affects all of us. To our Augusta-Richmond County officials and staff members who worked so hard to help, your efforts did not go unnoticed.

(The writer is president of Turn Back The Block.)

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