Peekskill School Club Helps Keep Open Spaces Green and Clean

A Civic and Educational Campaign to highlight the importance of maintaining clean green spaces in the great outdoors is being undertaken by the Peekskill Hispanic Community Corp., in conjunction with Peekskill High School’s Latino Culture Club (LCC). 

by Katherine Quezada, a senior at Peekskill High School who aspires to major in Forensic Science. She belongs to several Honor Societies, serving as Treasurer of the Science Honor Society and President of the Latino Culture Club. Katherine moved to America in 2017 from Ecuador.

Councilman Ramon Fernandes, members of the Latino Culture Club, and even younger members of our community have joined to spread the message on Sundays, as weather permits, when more people enjoy going out to the parks.  

Our slogan, “The trash doesn’t walk by itself,” reflects a message that, while not new, seems to have been forgotten by too many people. We have seen first hand how the habit of littering is commonplace, even when there are plenty of trash cans conveniently placed for easy use.  

We work hard to minimize this bad habit. We disperse our volunteers throughout the parks to remind people how simple and essential it is to maintain our green spaces so they are free of litter.  

We maintain social distancing at all times, and distribute free masks. 

Peekskill has a large Latino population, and it’s very beneficial to count on our bilingual volunteers to broadcast this important message to everyone.  

The Latino Cultural Club officers and coordinators are moving this initiative forward by inviting other youth clubs to participate with us. We look forward this year to expanding our efforts as the temperatures become more tolerable and safe.  

People of All Ages Can Help Better the World 

by Janira Martinez 
Peekskill High School rising sophomore and Latino Culture Club (LCC) member

If there’s ever been a time to be conscientious about keeping our parks green, it’s now: A period in history in which a raving pandemic sweeps the globe and climate change serves as a hot topic.      

Latino Culture Club (LCC) members on their “clean-up” rounds in Peekskill Riverfront Green Park are (from left) Club Coordinator Sonia Veloz, Kimberly Alvarez, Samantha Barragan, Ariela Fajardo, Janira Martinez, Belinda Chillogallo (of Environmental Club).

Thus, volunteering time and spreading the word along with kind reminders about throwing out your trash is an effort we can all participate in — high school students, children, even adults.   

I enjoyed socializing with LCC members and people from the Peekskill community whilst wearing our campaign shirts and pins, walking around with fliers.  

We are never too young nor too old to make a change in the world. Our voice holds power.  Every flier given that says, “The trash doesn’t walk by itself/La basura no camina sola” sends a clear message: We, as a community, as youth, must protect our environment from our own careless mistakes.   

We plan to invite other Peekskill High School groups, such as the Environmental Club and the Black Diamonds, to join us, as we look forward to adding activities to this campaign. 

¿Que Es LCC?  

Latino Culture Club is a very active club comrpised of high school students, from diverse backgrounds, who like to dedicate their volunteer services to the community. We enrich our knowledge about other cultures, while meeting new people through the club, and in the places where we volunteer.  

We have participated in food distributions, car washes, local festivals, and census outreach, among other activities. Our best compensation is knowing that we are giving back to our community while motivating others to do the same. All the members of the club have different aspirations for the future, but we all desire to serve our community beyond high school.  

Founder > Myrna Santos
Coordinator > Sonia Veloz
President > Katherine Quezada
Vice President > Luisa Urgiles
Treasurer > Edwin Rivera and Samantha Barragan 
Secretary > Valeria Ortega Preciado 


1 Comment

  1. So proud of you Katherine Quezada, seems like yesterday you entered our Newcomer class. Keep up the amazing work!!!

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