Litter picking Mia, 10, leads by example by cleaning up her community

A ten-year-old girl has rolled up her sleeves to give her community a clean-up, making it safe for everyone.

Monday, 10th August 2020, 12:30 pm
Mia Wileman-Ashby, 10, of Hornbeam Green in Pontefract, noticed littering becoming a problem around the green areas near her family's home

Mia Wileman-Ashby, 10, of Hornbeam Green in Pontefract, noticed littering becoming a problem around the green areas near her family's home, so last Saturday, she led her family in a street sweep.

Mum, Sarah, said cans, bottles and dog poo bags are amongst the biggest culprits in the mounds of litter that appear on the green areas surrounding their home.

She said: “Mia is such a wonderful little girl, she’s always recognised the littering as a problem and it tends to make her quite angry when it’s a mess out front.

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“It’s understandable because it’s not nice for her to grow up around, I can’t let her out to play there when there’s broken glass and bits of metal on the grass.

“I went out with Mia and my other daughter, who’s only three, with litter grabbers and bags.

“It’s not the first time we’ve been out with Mia to clean up, but she’s quite happy to do so, she just gets on with it without wanting any recognition for it - me and her dad are so proud of her.”

The littering became an even bigger concern for the family and other residents on the street when a public bin on one of the green areas was removed.

As well as the litter being bad for the environment and making the area look untidy, grass cutters often come to the green areas and tear the aluminum cans to shreds, making the areas unsafe for the children to play on.

Sarah said: “It is getting worse and worse, it’s so bad that another lady on our street has been cleaning the area with her children too.

“Why can’t people put their rubbish in the bin? We’ve all seen the impact rubbish can have on wildlife and now it’s putting children at risk.

“It’s both environmental and community issue, of course it shouldn’t be up to us to clean up but if everyone could get out and clean up where they live, the world would be a better place.”