There’ll be plenty of trash talk along Manitoba highways today as members of the province’s 4-H clubs take to the ditches to pick up garbage in their annual “highway cleanup” campaign.
This year, members aged eight to 25, along with volunteer leaders and parents, from 38 clubs are set to join in the 28th annual campaign, sponsored by Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development and the Manitoba 4-H Council.
This joint project raises funds for 4-H clubs, teaches 4-H members the value of environmental consciousness and recycling and assists MIT with spring cleaning responsibilities.
The designated cleanup date is today with a rain date of May 31.
“The youth take great pride in the work they do and it has a huge impact on everyone involved,” according to a 4-H news release.
“Once you have walked all those miles of highway ditches, accepted the car horn ‘salutes of success’ from passing motorists, slogged through mud and water and can see the difference your club has made, it produces a new level of environmental awareness.”
Last year, 792 participants from 36 clubs cleaned more than 467 kilometres of highway and filled 2,098 garbage bags.
The campaign raised more than $12,000 for 4-H clubs in Manitoba. MIT pays $20 per kilometre of roadside cleaned, an additional $5/km if the clubs take the refuse to a local landfill site and an additional $5/km if cleaning is within a three-kilometre radius of a community with a population of 1,000 or more.
Recyclable plastic drink bottles and aluminum cans can also be collected and delivered to Manitoba Soft Drink Recycling depots.
Safety is always the No. 1 priority, especially for the adult helpers involved with guiding the 4-H members and volunteers on the day. The
4-H membership will be wearing safety vests while involved in this project to be more visible, so slow down and, as always, be cautious and alert drivers.<t$>