READING, PA, – This evening, June 23rd, from 6 pm to 8 PM, Reading based organizations Barrio Alegria, the South of Penn Taskforce, and Public Works of Reading PA are holding a cleanup summit with organizations and residents who have organized cleanups in the city last year. Their goal is to explore new and creative strategies for sustaining cleanup initiatives into the future.
According to Bethany Ayers-Fisher, Community Outreach and Education Coordinator for Public Works, “Despite the pandemic, other groups have begun hosting cleanups throughout the city. There are now semi-regular cleanups at the Reading Iron Playground, Front & Schiller Playground, Barbey’s Playground, Bingaman Court, and Pendora Park. Other organizations such as the One Love Project, Reading Rotary Club, and Berks Realtors are committing to hosting two or more cleanups a year. Mayor Moran and State Representative Guzman are also joining in the community cleanup movement, committing to hosting six cleanups at various locations throughout the city.”
For several years, the South of Penn and Barrio Alegria have been working to harness community energy around cleanups across Southwest Reading, hosting competitions and challenging neighboring cities like Pottstown. Shortly into the pandemic, other organizations began to come to them for guidance on hosting their own cleanups. Due to this outburst of energy and interest, this summit seeks to direct and organize that energy for the continued benefit to our community.
According to Daniel Egusquiza, Barrio Executive Director, “The purpose of this summit is to put our resources on the table, and figure out ways to take this energy into the future.”
Reading nonprofit Barrio Alegria uses the arts as a platform for community engagement and for the development of social and multicultural awareness.