Columbia Residents Clean Community

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COLUMBIA - Residents teamed up to clean their community Saturday morning for the 18th annual Cleanup Columbia event. 

Nearly 110 groups with more than 1,550 volunteers spread throughout the city to pick up trash along trails, parks and streams. Some groups also removed graffiti from public property. Columbia's volunteer program organized the city-wide trash pickup.

More than 30 Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Highlands Ward, picked up trash at Nifong Park as part of the event. Volunteers said they found several cigarette butts, a few tires and shingles among the trash. 

Dean Hainsworth is the bishop of the church and helped organize the volunteer group. He said church members have participated in Cleanup Columbia before and think it's a a good way to connect with the community.

"We believe that service makes a difference," Hainsworth said. "You know, when you're doing good things for other people you feel better about yourself, and so it's a great opportunity to give our congregation an opportunity to serve, but also it helps the community. It brings us together as a community and helps us to enjoy the place we live in."

The Columbia Volunteer Program encourages drivers to use caution in Columbia Saturday as volunteers may be working near roadways.