Aug. 11, 2016
Students from the Sullivan Renaissance Intern Program recently began a district clean-up project.
Armed with paintbrushes, hand gloves and trash bags, the 11 volunteers, all students representing a Sullivan County school district, collected rubbish strewn on the Somerville Field across from the George L. Cooke Elementary School.
The mission of this student-led beautification project is nostalgic and simple: restore the area into the welcoming, vibrant space that it was when they were younger.
The students are all part of the Sullivan Renaissance Internship Program, a program designed to provide opportunities for young people from around Sullivan County to help make their community a better place.
The Somerville Field clean-up project grew when former students Mackenzie Mitchell and Samantha Dorn found themselves looking for a place to complete their summer conditioning workouts for collegiate soccer.
“Sam and I are both playing soccer in the fall and we needed a location to do our speed workouts,” Mackenzie said. “We tried to run laps around the track [at Somerville Field], but we didn’t get very far without kicking up rocks or stumbling. We used to go to the field for practice when we were younger, but it hasn’t been cared for.”
On Aug. 11, students began by picking up several bags of litter, cutting down branches and removing overgrown plants.
“Already, the field is looking better,” Sullivan Renaissance Assistant Director Denise Frangipane said. “By thinning out the trees, the field is become more visible and inviting. This is the start of something good.”
For more information about Sullivan Renaissance or the Somerville Field clean-up project, visit www.SullivanRenaissance.org