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Centro Latino’s clean-up starts at church grounds

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Team would clear other problem areas

By Lisa King

Clean-up crews from Centro Latino will soon be a familiar sight around town, easily identifiable by tan t-shirts with red lettering.

Sister Pat Reno, executive director for Centro Latino, said a clean-up project kicked off Saturday at the Church of the Annunciation with a group of 12 volunteers who worked on the church grounds, raking, weeding, trimming brush and just doing general tidying up.

“We will do one location a month, and we will have a group of volunteers wearing Centro Latino shirts and working to clean up and help landscape areas of town that need it,” she said.

Reno said she thought the project would be a great way for the people who frequent Centro Latino to show their appreciation for all the community does for the organization. She added that when she presented the idea there, the people were very receptive.

“The men were just thrilled; they said, yes, they would absolutely help,” she said. “They appreciate so much that Centro Latino is here to help them with clothing and food and that they can come in and get a drink of water while they’re waiting outside to get work.”

Reno said the community has also been very supportive of the clean-up project, with many people donating rakes and hoes and other items for that purpose.

Reno said that so far a second site has not been slated for clean up, but that two of Centro Latino’s board members, Bill Reidy and Vance Simmons, are working in conjunction with city and county officials to determine which area would be tackled next.

 “We are working with everyone to let them know what we are doing and to get their input on what areas of town to clean up,” she said.

Simmons said the board of Centro Latino was very supportive of the project.

“We want to show the community that we appreciate them supporting us and donating to us,” he said.

Reno echoed that thought.

“People have been so good to us, donating food and clothing and household items they are not using anymore,” she said. “They even bring us food from their gardens, and everything they bring in is used and appreciated greatly.”