United Way’s Emerging Leaders United hosts annual 'Spring Clean-up'

Volunteers spend a morning in Rome cleaning up as part of “Keep the Mohawk Valley Beautiful” efforts

Rome, NY-

United Way of the Mohawk Valley’s Emerging Leaders United (United Way MV’s ELU), partnered with Positively Rome, Rome Clean & Green, and the “Keep America Beautiful: Great American Clean-up” effort for their annual Spring Clean-up. This is the 23rd annual Great American Clean-up and the third year United Way MV’s ELU has helped to bring local community volunteers as a part of this effort in the Mohawk Valley.

“Our ELU members are committed, compassionate, generous individuals dedicated to making a positive impact on our community,” said Erin Gutierrez Matt, United Way MV’s CEO. “With the increased use of masks and gloves throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen an increase in these items being left behind in area parking lots, streets, and even local parks where families gather. Joining the ‘Keep America Beautiful’ effort is a great way to help keep this community we all call home clean and beautiful.”

United Way’s ELU and more than 30 volunteers gathered early Saturday morning to clean debris throughout Rome’s Pinti Field and the surrounding area. Dippin’ Donuts helped to give the volunteers a morning jolt with donated coffee and donuts.

Partner organization Positively Rome assisted with organizing the clean-up effort including coordination of needed supplies, such as garbage bags, racks, gloves, and garbage pick-up.

“We’re very grateful to be working with United Way of the Mohawk Valley on this neighborhood clean-up,” said Jake DiBari of Positively Rome. “United Way has a long history of helping to elevate Rome, and this is just another example of the great work they do.”

Added benefits for volunteers joining United Way’s ELU was the chance to win gift certificates to local businesses as part of a garbage collection scavenger hunt! After collecting about 40 bags of garbage at their clean-up, the group headed over to Copper City Brewing for a special drink discount, tomato pie donated by Ferlo’s, and pizza donated by LaRoma’s.

“ELU’s Spring Clean-up effort is a great way to give back with like-minded individuals,” said Melinda Green, United Way MV’s ELU Committee Chair. “The event is a perfect volunteer opportunity for individuals to get outside and interact with the community while making a positive difference. Efforts like this are made possible thanks to our ELU committee, sponsors including M&T Bank and Priceless Inspections, LLC, and many local company partners, and community volunteers.”

The Great American Cleanup is the nation’s largest community improvement program. engages more than 3 million volunteers and participants each year. This year’s social theme, #DoBeautifulThings, is highlighting volunteers and participants, proving that even in challenging times, people do beautiful things, according to Keep America Beautiful’s website.

For more information on United Way of the Mohawk Valley’s Emerging Leaders United, visit www.unitedwaymv.org/elu.