In anticipation of the stay-at-home order, the Rotary Club of Grimsby in concert with its sister Rotary Clubs is immediately pausing the recruitment of volunteers for the West Niagara Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup for Saturday, April 24th.  Rotary continues to be committed to our environment, however choosing an alternate date is not possible at this time.
 
The safety of our community members is paramount and Government protocols guide our actions.
 
We have accomplished a lot planning for this event in a Grey/shutdown environment.  What is most important now, is stopping Covid-19 in its tracks.  We are doing our part by pausing the West Niagara portion of the Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup.
 
Over 15 partner organizations, all four governments within the West Niagara area and numerous service clubs and community groups have joined in our efforts.  We thank them and appreciate their continued support and partnership.
 
Over the next week, we will share educational information about the importance of our watershed and what everyone of us can do, every day, to help keep our watersheds clean. 
 
Please check back to learn what is possible on an individual basis and, when in the future, we may be able to do something as a broader community.
 
Take care and stay safe.
 
The Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup initiative is an effort that has grown from a Rotary District 7090 service project covering a small portion of Lake Ontario and Erie to a multi-district plan to focus Rotarians’ attention to all five of the Great Lakes and streams and waterways feeding them.  Rotary's goal is to make this the single largest cleanup event ever planned and coinciding with Earth Day 2021 on the Great Lakes Watershed.  
 
The Rotary Club of Grimsby in partnership with Lincoln Rotary has been mobilizing numerous community groups and organizations for a community-wide cleanup event originally scheduled for Saturday, April 24th, 2021.
 
The Great Lakes contains almost 20% of the world’s fresh water and is arguably the largest source of fresh water on the planet.  It borders 8 states and 2 provinces and has 9,577 miles (15,323 kilometers) of shoreline.  So far 15 Districts, 100’s of Clubs, and thousands of Rotary volunteers have agreed to participate.  We will be joining over one billion people worldwide working on projects together in their communities on Earth Day.
 
Trash, plastics, and other littered items plague our waterways.  This trash poses a threat to terrestrial and aquatic life, often becomes microplastics and harmful toxins, and pollutes one of the most precious and limited natural resources.  Shopping carts, tires, furniture, trash, foam cups, plastic containers, and aluminum cans contaminate our waterways and greenways.  More than 22 million pounds (48.4 million kilograms) of trash and plastic pollution ends up in the Great Lakes each year.
 
Cleanups from numerous NGO’s, community groups, and individual volunteers are critical to reducing the amount of garbage that collects in our watersheds each year.  In order to track our success, the second goal will be to tabulate the amount of debris collected from each of the individual cleanup events.  And the final and most important goal will be to educate the public to the importance of protecting our waterways and to instill a sense of stewardship towards our Great Lakes.
 
The Great Lakes Watershed events will be held between Saturday, April 17th, and Saturday, April 24th to coincide with the celebration of Earth Day, which falls on April 22nd.
 
This collaborative work project has generated much excitement and enthusiasm among the planners and is reflective of the upcoming addition of The Environment as a new area of focus of Rotary International.  It also reflects our desire to be People of Action and to promote the good work of Rotary.
 
Rotary's Objectives for the Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup:
• Improve the aesthetics of the Great Lakes by removing garbage from public areas and roadsides.
• Reduce the amount of plastic and litter on our lands and in our waterways.
• Remove waste that could potentially be ingested by pets and other wildlife.
• Provide an opportunity for public participation in collaborative activities.
• Educate the public about the effects of littering, the importance of recycling, and to instill a sense of stewardship.
• Collect and report back to organizers cleanup metrics to track the impacts of all the cleanups.
 
Interested in more information? Send a note to President Liz via the contact us link on this site.