Iranian-Americans for Earth Day
Parto Piran-Moradi & Mani Farhadi
PAAIA Bay Area/Kermanshah Chapter
April 21, 2010, Campbell, CA – Whether you are a zealous environmentalist or deny global warming altogether, you have to be a proponent of clean parks, creeks and trails in your neighborhood. That certainly seemed the logic for Assembly Member Jim Beall’s invitation, at the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, to clean up Los Gatos Creek in Campbell Park, Campbell, CA on Saturday April 17th. Assembly Member Beall represents California’s 24th District. PAAIA partnered with YPP and Iranican to promote this event and about 30 Iranian-Americans jumped at the chance to join their neighbors and help take care of this precious resource. The group included Iranian-Americans from all over the Bay Area and from all generations. It was a chance for families and friends to volunteer together for a common cause.
We started the day by signing in, selecting a team captain, gathering our gloves and trash bags and after brief instructions, heading out to the trails. Finding debris turned out to be more difficult than we anticipated but between the 100 total volunteers gathered we filled about 20-25 trash bags. The items we located ranged from candy and gum wrappers, a few soda and beer cans, a blue knit cap tangled in the bushes, to a broken folding chair, an old tire and even a computer! The most interesting find of the day had to be the red, vinyl car seat that needed to be hauled back with a shopping cart!
According to Assembly Member Beall, this was the 8th consecutive year that the LG Creek had been part of a cleanup effort, therefore the trash and debris gathered, while significant, didn’t allude to a significant problem. He thanked us for our involvement and we promised to connect with his staff for future joint community enterprises. We were even approached as Iranian-Americans by regular park enthusiasts and thanked for our contributions to this cause. The message was certainly clear, ordinary citizens were making a difference. Group photos were taken and the Assembly Member’s staff distributed Certificates of Recognition to all participants. The day ended with a free BBQ set up by the Santa Clara County Fire fighters and a pledge by many of us to repeat our efforts at another polluted creek/trail. It felt like a satisfying Saturday morning, doing something right for the environment, giving back to our community, building a positive image and getting some exercise mixed in!
Click here to see the slide show.
We would like to thank Assembly Member James Beall and his staff for sponsoring the event.