• John Jantak

Federal Liberal Youth Council cleans up Pincourt’s Bellevue Park for Earth Day


PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK

Members of the federal Liberal Youth Council from Vaudreuil-Soulanges MP Peter Schiefke’s riding office and other volunteers helped to clean the shoreline at Bellevue Park in Pincourt for Earth Day on Sunday, April 22.

A group of young people from the federal Liberal Youth Council in Peter Schiefke’s Vaudreuil-Soulanges riding office along with other volunteers lent a helping hand to clean up part of the shoreline and grounds at Bellevue Park in Pincourt last Sunday, April 22.

“They’re ecstatic about it,” said Raphaël Beauchamp, Special Assistant to Peter Schiefke. “They wanted to get involved in their community and help out on this very important day.” An unexpected delay at another function in Halifax kept Schiefke from attending the event.

“The environment is one of the priorities for Mr. Schiefke and the youth council,” said Beauchamp. “We’re doing it to clean up the shore but it’s also an experience for the youth council and members of our community to learn what kind of trash there is in our region and how they can make a positive impact.

“We’re also learning about the beautiful landscapes we have and deepening the natural links we have with our environment. To be picking up trash from our beaches is really meaningful and it’s something our volunteers really wanted to do,” Beauchamp added.

Family affair

For David Szollosy, who was volunteering alongside his two daughters Isabel, 16, and Jane, 14, it was a family event geared towards volunteering their time to do something positive to improve the environment for Earth Day.

“I’m here to help the community and help out the youth to clean up the environment and make this a nice area. It’s also about keeping our planet clean. That’s what I want to do. It’s very important that we do something like this,” said Szollosy.

“It’s incredibly important to take care of our environment. The fact that we’re getting the whole community together is really important as well,” said Isabel, a sentiment shared by her sister Jane.

Environmental concerns

A long-term perspective regarding how mankind deals with current environmental issues and the impact it could have on future generations is what inspired Quincy Ross, 20, to participate. “I’m here for my children and grandchildren,” Ross told The Journal.

“I’ve never been a huge advocate for the environment until I met Mr. Schiefke and he opened my eyes. There are so many causes, but this is one that will affect my children and grandchildren the most, at least for me. If our earth is not healthy in the next 25, 50 or 75 years, I’ll probably feel guilty about that,” added Ross.

Another youth committee member Zachary Roloff noted some of the plastics were difficult to pick up from the ground as they had already begun breaking down into increasingly smaller pieces.

“I’m here because I’m afraid of what the future holds for us,” said the 20-year-old Notre-Dame-de-l’Île-Perrot resident. Among the items the group amassed were an arrow, many small clear plastic Zip-lock bags, and plastic tampon applicators indicating raw sewage still being disposed of in the Ottawa River.

“We might be doing a nice job today, but it’s still a really serious problem,” said Roloff.

For Bruno Morin, 20, it’s an important event to raise the consciousness of youth in Vaudreuil-Soulanges regarding the environment. “It’s also important to show our community that our youth do get involved and volunteer their time for the environment and other activities. This is a beautiful area and it’s important the volunteers are here today to clean up the park and riverfront,” said Morin.

Municipal participation

The event was also attended by Pincourt Town Councillors Alexandre Wolford, Denise Bergeron and Diane Boyer. “I’m here to support the youth council. I think it’s a great initiative to be able to help as we did last year,” said Wolford.

“I’m very happy our citizens are participating. It’s very important to keep our water free from plastics and other waste. We can’t keep our water clean without keeping our earth clean too. They both go together. We have to realize it’s important to take care of our environment 365 days a year and not only on Earth Day,” said Boyer.

See more photos on our Facebook page.

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