Many of you have called the 8th District office recently with concerns about increased litter and garbage defacing our streets, sidewalks and alleys.
"I implore residents and business owners to organize neighborhood cleanups this fall to help fight this literal trashing of our neighborhoods," said Ald. Donovan, who teamed up with the Milwaukee Alliance and Community Partners to organize a neighborhood cleanup at Reiske Park at S. 23rd and Lapham in October.
As part of his efforts to combat litter problems and revitalize the near south side, Ald. Donovan has gotten youth involved in cleaning up neighborhoods. The most visible participants in the youth efforts are the Litter Marshals and Graffiti Busters.
More than 300 elementary school children on the near south side have been sworn in as Litter Marshals. In an effort to promote good citizenship, the children pledged to not litter, to pick up litter and to help keep their neighborhoods clean.
Working with Journey House and the city Department of Neighborhood Services, the alderman also created the Graffiti Busters program. This initiative is similar to the Litter Marshals effort in that participants take a pledge to commit to the effort. The young people in the Graffiti Busters program pledge to refrain from graffiti vandalism and to report and help clean up graffiti they find in their neighborhoods.
Alderman Donovan said both programs are ways of getting young people involved in becoming stakeholders where they live. "It's never too early to start molding responsible and civic-minded citizens," he said. "These programs give youth the opportunity to channel their energy in a positive manner, and it makes them active participants in the overall effort to improve their community."