Giving trash the boot

Israel’s inaugural Clean the Land Day will take place across the country on Friday, May 18. This welcome initiative comes from four Masa Israel Government Fellows — Daniel Barnett, Max Friedenberg, Sam Silverlieb and Joel Wanger – who created a national …

Israel’s inaugural Clean the Land Day will take place across the country on Friday, May 18. This welcome initiative comes from four Masa Israel Government Fellows — Daniel Barnett, Max Friedenberg, Sam Silverlieb and Joel Wanger – who created a national trash pickup day out frustration with the countless cigarette butts, plastic bags and cups, and empty bottles and boxes littering the landscape.

A very user-friendly website invites would-be participants to register to join a cleanup crew. You get a packet with info, along with disposable gloves (better throw those away responsibly!) and trash bags.

I say it’s about time. The littering problem is among the few aspects of life in Israel that bothered me as a new immigrant in 2007. Anglos talk about it all the time with great disgust. Some other organizations have even tried to do something about it. Well, here’s a way to be part of the solution.

I couldn’t say it better than the founders do: “Clean the Land is a social movement that seeks to create a cleaner and greener State of Israel. The inaugural Clean the Land initiative is the first step toward the movement’s larger goal of establishing a socially and environmentally responsible Israeli society in which phrases like “leave no trace” and “reduce, reuse, recycle” are as common as “yalla’” (let’s go, hurry up) and “yihiyeh b’seder” (it will be ok).”

And that’s no trash talk.

About Abigail Klein Leichman

Abigail Klein Leichman is a writer and associate editor at ISRAEL21c. Prior to moving to Israel in 2007, she was a specialty writer and copy editor at a daily newspaper in New Jersey and has freelanced for a variety of newspapers and periodicals since 1984.