'One little person, so many big ideas'
By Justin Strawser
SHAMOKIN - A typical 9-year-old might complain they have to take out the trash as part of their regular chores, but Rosalind Kane is not your typical kid.
In fact, Sunday afternoon was the second time the Shamokin Elementary fourth-grade student organized a community cleanup in the city and collected canned goods and non-perishable food items for a local food bank.
"I was tired of walking around and seeing all the garbage. No wonder people don't come here. It's so dirty," Rosalind said following the hour-long litter pickup.
Her passion for making the town beautiful started by observing the trash around streets and sidewalks and making the effort to pick it up herself, she said.
It was Rosalind's idea to start the event and ask participants to bring food items, and her mother, Marla Kane, advertised it on Facebook and spreads the word through friends and relatives.
"She tells me when she wants to do it and where. It's all her," said Marla Kane.
Approximately 20 people gathered at 1 p.m. at the grandstand at Claude Kehler Community Park at Third and Arch streets where they first handed in a food item. Each person was then given a trash bag, gloves and assigned area to start picking up trash.
Rosalind said there were empty Turkey Hill containers, old T-shirts, broken mops, footballs and lottery tickets found in the streets.
She noted she checked the tickets in case they were winners - if she had won, she would have donated the money to the poor and needy, she said.
Rosalind also organized a Labor Day cleanup in which 35 area residents donated an hour to spruce up various areas around town. Her mother, Marla Kane, said the cold weather and youth football games may have been a reason why there weren't as many participants Sunday.
Nevertheless, the team brought in at least 30 bags of trash - something Marla is proud of her daughter for organizing.
"She's one little person, and she has so many big ideas. She says if you can get everyone together, you can change things. She's only 9, and that's pretty amazing," Marla Kane said.
Rosalind said there's power in bringing people together.
"If more people did it, the faster it would get done, and there would be less the next time," she said.
Renn's Municpal Waste, Pitman, provided a dump truck for the trash removal free of charge, and all food items will be donated to Manna for the Many, located at 144 E. Independence St., Shamokin, on Thursday.
In her free time, Rosalind likes to clean up around her house and donate toys and clothing to Goodwill, and she is currently writing a screenplay about mermaids. She is also planning to organize a fundraiser for hurricane victims in New York and New Jersey.