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Cynthia writes: These guys are AWESOME, Kevin and Jody are the best neighbors, they saw this group at work when they were in Japan and brought the idea back with them, to start the first Green Bird in the US right here in Anaheim. Their Facebook page has some good info too.
Kevin and Jody are a HUGE part of why I am still in Anaheim. The night of the riots that July really messed with my head as you know. The next morning I drove around surveying the damage, taking pictures and realizing the mob had come a lot closer to my home than even I had guessed at the night before. Glad I didn’t know that night or I’d have been even worse than I was. And as I drove around, crying, SERIOUSLY thinking it was time to sell and run, I looked over, and there were Jody and Kevin, out on the corner of Broadway and Anaheim Blvd. with trash bags and claw-pickers and brooms and dustpans, just quietly cleaning up.
During the day more people joined them, and by the time I got back over there to help they were done, there wasn’t a trace of broken glass or wreckage. They made me believe again, they reminded me that the good people who live here are better than the thugs running through the streets wreaking havoc that night, and I dug in to fight for my home town instead of bailing on it.
So if we can help them get the word out, I would like to do that please. Can you post for me? I would like to challenge OJ bloggers and readers to come for the inaugural clean up day on Saturday July 26th:
Anaheim neighbors stand up to litter by forming a Green Bird team –
First in the U.S.
In the shadow of Disneyland, Angel Stadium, and the Anaheim Packing House, there’s a brand new wonder to behold in Anaheim, California. Dressed in green vests and wielding metal tongs, the Green Bird team of Anaheim is a litter-collecting army of local residents and volunteers of all ages and backgrounds, intent on cleaning up their city.
Begun in Tokyo in 2003 by a group of eco-conscious young people, Green Bird now has teams in over 50 locations across Japan, as well as overseas groups in France, Sri Lanka, Singapore and Ghana. Anaheim is home to the first U.S. team.
Trash gathering might not sound like the next big thing but Green Bird is a unique organization that has captured the interest of thousands of people who’d never volunteered for anything before. Although Green Bird’s main focus is “to clean the towns we live in and love”, it’s also about changing people’s attitude by setting an example. The Green Bird message is clear: “Littering is ugly and uncool.”
Anaheim’s involvement with the group began earlier this year when Southern California designers Kevin Kidney and Jody Daily visited Tokyo and encountered several young cleaners picking up litter along a busy street. Residents of Anaheim’s historic downtown district, Kidney and Daily saw good potential in conjuring up a similar program back home. “It seemed like a fantastic way to meet other like-minded people and to do something for our community,” says Kidney. “Being responsible for keeping one’s environment clean is a strong value built into Japanese culture, and something that we Americans might learn from.”
Green Bird’s operation in Japan is handled by a small staff in Harajuku led by 33-year-old Toshinari Yokoo. “Sometimes,” explains Yokoo, “a non-profit organization can get things done more quickly than the government.”
Green Bird’s distinctive logo was designed by Bunpei Yorifuji, a highly sought-after illustrator in Japan. “The branding is funny and quirky, and crucial to attracting interest to the work we’re doing,” says Kidney. “Green Bird provides an opportunity for our Anaheim neighborhoods to share a common purpose with people all over the world. Seeing Anaheim listed alongside Paris, Tokyo, and Singapore is really exciting, and a reminder that we’re all caretakers of our environment. We believe when people come together to clean up their neighborhood, they begin to feel more attached to where they live.”
The Green Bird Anaheim Team will officially launch on July 26, with a two-hour Downtown Clean-Up event starting at 9AM. Green Bird will host an information booth on Center Street Promenade from noon to 6PM as part of the First Annual Vegan Faire in Downtown Anaheim.
Regular bi-monthly clean-ups will be scheduled throughout the city of Anaheim, and volunteers may sign up on the Green Bird Anaheim Facebook page.
Contact Green Bird Anaheim
Facebook: Green Bird Anaheim
Green Bird Japan – website