Local environmental organization reflects on recent growth, successes

As Keep Carter County Beautiful continues to reach out to community leaders and organizations, its influence expands along with its efforts, and board members are not planning to slow down anytime soon.

“God said we are stewards of the Earth,” chairman Edward Jordan said. “I would like to push the word that you do something every day to enhance the planet.”

This could be anything, he said, from something as small as picking up a wrapper you see on a sidewalk to participating in a community cleanup.

This is the mentality KCCB has been working on spreading since it started years ago. Starting as a group of people looking to make a difference, the organization has grown to give presentations to multiple organizations across the county.

“Just last week, there were three meetings I was involved with,” Jordan said. “I was down at the Carter County Drug Prevention Center.”

He said he gave the youth there a presentation, and their reaction was a surprise.

“I was shocked at how inquisitive they were,” Jordan said. “I was floored at how they wanted to get involved and what they were doing.”

CCDP youth recently cleaned up hundreds of cigarette butts from Elizabethton’s various parks, and Jordan said the growing relationship between CCDP and KCCB will be beneficial to the community as a whole.

“They already want to know when the next cleanup is going to be,” he said.

In terms of government, after some controversy regarding the Teaberry Road cleanup earlier in the year, the Landfill Committee voted in favor of allowing Solid Waste Director Benny Lyons to lend out dumpsters for KCCB to utilize in future cleanups.

With details still coming about a future Poga Road cleanup, KCCB has reached out to and worked with the National Forestry Service, and future interaction with Tennessee Department of Transportation for highway cleanups and future grants means KCCB’s relationships with government organizations are continuing to grow.

“I think it is good Carter County is taking the lead,” Edward Bascomi said. “You see in television and newspapers ‘Carter County’ instead of ‘Washington County’ and other counties.”

Commissioner Ross Garland said he wanted to thank everyone who has worked hard to get the organization to where it is today.

“We want to thank you guys for all the hard work you are doing,” Garland said. “We know the work you put into it.”

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