Members of the community gathered today at Girard Park in Lafayette to kick off Parish Proud's "Park Proud Series" beautification events.
Girard Park is just one of Lafayette's most beloved parks in need of revitalization. More than 400 volunteers and organizations showed up to make a difference, one garbage bag at a time.
"Park Proud Series" events like today are all about giving back to our community and implementing strategies to improve health, wellness and play across the board.
Ochsner Lafayette General also provided life-changing resources like health screenings, vaccines and boosters at the community event.
KATC spoke with event lead, Chuck LaGrange, about what members of the community should be mindful of to keep Acadiana clean. "It can be as simple as keeping the grass cut, picking up litter, contacting Parish Proud for clean-up tools or volunteer opportunities, but it really is taking responsibility for your community whichever you can," LaGrange added.
Among the variety of litter collected, cigarette ends and single use disposable items particularly face masks amidst the pandemic and beverage containers tend to frequent the clean-up list.
Parish Proud Executive Director, Brianne Hendricks said, "One of the biggest things that we find when doing clean ups is cigarette butts, and one cigarette butt take 11 years to biodegrade. So, every time someone flicks out a cigarette butt that is another 11 years, which gets into our waterways and water streams and can really be a poison to everything around us. And its critical that we pick up litter whenever we see it, or call 311 to report litter when you see it so we can keep our community healthy and clean."
Families, organizations, sports teams and more volunteers poured through the park this morning ready to get to work.
In partnership with the Lafayette Consolidated Government’s Parks, Arts, Recreation, and Culture Department (PARC). Volunteers services included:
- Sprucing up the park with fresh coats of paint
- Cleaning-up overgrown vegetation around the pond
- Laying down fresh track gravel and more during the day.
Drinks courtesy of Lafayette Coca-Cola Bottling Co., along with complimentary food service and a live DJ, co-sponsored by Acadian companies at today's beautification event.
For more information on volunteering and clean-up resources, please visit the Parish Proud website by clicking here or dial 311.