VALLEJO UNITES TO PICK UP TRASH

David Bo­suego, DeDe Scrivner-Bo­suego lead cleanup event at Sacra­mento and Wil­son

Times-Herald (Vallejo) - - FRONT PAGE - By Thomas Gase [email protected]­al­don­line.com @tga­sevth on Twit­ter

Vallejo’s David Bo­suego has lived in all types of com­mu­ni­ties, and no mat­ter what state they are in, he takes great pride in them. On Satur­day in Vallejo he joined about 25 oth­ers to prove that point.

Vallejo To­gether, part­ner­ing with the City of Vallejo Pub­lic Works team and other vol­un­teers, hosted a cleanup day at Sacra­mento Street and Wil­son Av­enue near a home­less en­camp­ment. Bo­suego, along with co-or­ga­nizer and wife DeDe Scrivner-Bo­suego, said that more than 200 bags of trash were picked up dur­ing the day. Items loaded up in­cluded dirty clothes, food, tele­vi­sions and other types of fur­ni­ture that had been built up dur­ing the last decade and a half.

David Bo­suego, who used to be home­less him­self in Vallejo, was happy to be part of a so­lu­tion.

“I like do­ing this be­cause I know what it’s like to not have any­thing,” Bo­suego said. “Just vis­it­ing here to see how hard it is for these peo­ple to take care of them­selves, I know what that’s like. I wanted to start this (the cleanup) a long time ago and I’ve been talk­ing about do­ing this for about a year. This whole day and this event is way big­ger than me.”

Scrivner-Bo­suego said that initially she and David wanted to help out the home­less by hav­ing a clean­ing event at the site where

the old Kmart store used to be on Sonoma Boule­vard, but those plans changed.

“There was a lot of trash in that area and we were ready to help out, but the home­less peo­ple liv­ing there were evicted from that area on Jan. 22 since it’s pri­vate prop­erty. Those peo­ple had to leave or else they would be fined,” Scrivner-Bo­suego said. “So a lot of those peo­ple came out here (Sacra­mento and Wil­son). There’s about 26 tents with around 40 peo­ple liv­ing here and the trash just grows every day. We have come out and started a garbage ser­vice for them. We sup­plied the garbage bags and told the peo­ple if you can bring the bags up to the top of road (Wil­son Av­enue), we’ll have Pub­lic Works pick it up twice a month. And they’ve been very thank­ful for that to­day and a lot of the peo­ple are also help­ing to clean to­day.”

Bill Bur­rage, who was help­ing out on Satur­day and works as Op­er­a­tions Man­ager for Re­col­ogy, was over­whelmed with just how much garbage was in the area.

“We’ve been dig­ging stuff up all day and it’s like a mini­land­fill here,” Bur­rage said. “I drive by here all the time on the way to ro­tary meet­ings and un­til you re­ally pay at­ten­tion you don’t re­al­ize just how much stuff is here. I un­der­stand peo­ple live here, but we all need to take pride in how our city looks.”

David Bo­suego said that for all the sites and piles of trash you could ac­tu­ally see just by stand­ing on Wil­son Av­enue, there were plenty more just as big but hid­den from view all over the sur­round­ing area. Boseugo said the items he was find­ing the most was dirty clothes.

“A lot of one-use clothes.

Peo­ple would have a 15-pound bag of clothes that would be­come a 45-pound bag full of clothes be­cause the clothes hadn’t been washed and they had got­ten wet,” David said. “I mean, there is no laun­dry mats out here in this en­camp­ment and a lot of peo­ple are afraid to leave this site to go have their clothes washed.”

Vallejo Mayor Bob Sam­payan helped out dur­ing the morn­ing and con­tin­u­ally ex­pressed thanks to all the vol­un­teers and or­ga­niz­ers, telling them it was great how much pride they had in the city. Sam­payan went on to say that it’s not just the home­less that are to blame for the amount of trash in the area.

“It’s very dis­turb­ing how much some peo­ple can’t take pride in the own town,” Sam­payan said. “So many peo­ple have driven by this area and they just dump their stuff here, be­cause it’s an eas­ier thing to do. There has been

tele­vi­sions, mi­crowaves, car parts just dumped right here. This exit is kind of an en­trance to the city and there is noth­ing like first im­pres­sions.”

Sam­payan went on to say that he wants to create a home­less pro­gram that would pro­vide a place for the un­shel­tered to go to.

“We need to give them a place to go to the bath­room and a dumb­ster for their trash,” Sam­payan said. “A lot of peo­ple that live here, they are afraid to leave for fear of their stuff be­ing stolen or their an­i­mals taken away from them.”

Scrivner-Bo­suego agreed with Sam­payan.

“When you talk with some of the peo­ple that live here there are two main things brought up with the first be­ing a con­cern of ‘Am I go­ing to be dis­placed to­day?’ The sec­ond thing is they are afraid to leave stuff for fear of be­ing ran­sacked,” Scrivner-Bo­suego

said. “So it be­comes this sur­vival mode. They need more shel­ter. It’s not just tents. The peo­ple that live here pick up wood and pal­lets to try and build around the tents, be­cause the tents aren’t enough.”

Scrivner-Bo­suego said that Seafood City helps out by pick­ing up bas­kets, while vol­un­teers such as some from Star­bucks were also at the event. A few churches in the area also did their part to help and the Lit­ter­ship pro­gram was also deeply in­volved.

“I have to give two big thumbs up to Dede and David, the or­ga­niz­ers, as well as all the vol­un­teers and peo­ple who came out to clean the area to­day,” Sam­payan said. “This area needs a lot of work and a lot of peo­ple came out to show a lot of pride in their com­mu­nity to­day.”

PHO­TOS BY CHRIS RI­LEY—TIMES-HER­ALD

Tim Rohn, of Fair­field, wheels garbage from an area off of Wil­son Av­enue as he helps Vallejo To­gether and the city dur­ing a com­mu­nity clean up day on Satur­day in Vallejo.

Peo­ple help to clean trash out of a home­less en­camp­ment dur­ing a com­mu­nity clean up day put on by Vallejo To­gether and the City of Vallejo on Satur­day.

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