Sometimes we get overwhelmed by the problems of the world. We don’t see how we can make a difference. But it is often the little things that we do that add up to be big things especially if we team up with others doing their little things.

Picking up litter is one of those little things. How often have we seen litter on the ground and just walked on? We don’t want to get our hands dirty picking up other people’s trash. We often are out walking and have nothing to put it in our there is no trash receptacle nearby. I have started to see more of those trash cans on my walks, but still, you’re having to pick up dirty stuff.

Why not prepare ahead of time and maybe bring gloves and a bag – or better yet one of those picking-up tools – not sure the name but you have seen them. ? Maybe for one of your walks be on the lookout for trash that you can remove from the grass or trail? Dog walkers have to prepare ahead of time, don’t they?

Another idea is going to a group that is doing a regular street cleanup. How can you find one? Groups can adopt a section of road and schedule a regular clean-up time. They can even get trash bags and visibility vests from local governments to help. And then they will post a sign on the section of road they are working. Below you will see 4 signs just around my immediate neighborhood in Mukilteo from groups.

There is an HOA doing it:

There is a neighborhood watch group:

The local Islamic Center has adopted a stretch of road:

And one of our local Toastmasters clubs had adopted as well:

This is four groups, just in a small area of Mukilteo. This is a great help in cleaning up litter in our area and keeping it beautiful. There is power in people gathering together in a common purpose. Years ago our Pacific Northwest John Denver group collaborated in working a stretch of I-5 north of Everett in tribute to him – living out the values he sang about so beautifully.

Don’t despair, there are little things you can do that collectively add up to a great effort. Think about groups you are in who might be open to this. You can make a difference.