Water sweep keeps Bayou DeSiard neat

Olivia Barfield

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For many students, walking along the bayou is a relaxing way to wind down.

The members of Tri Beta and Circle K, however, gave up some of their wind down time to keep the bayou looking good for the rest of us last Saturday.

At the tenth annual Ouachita Parish Water Sweep, groups of volunteers parish-wide picked a body of water and swept it clean.

As the water sweep’s website says, “after a summer of fun on the river it is all of our responsibility to pick-up what was left behind.”

Members of the Biology Honor Society Beta Beta Beta (TriBeta) and Circle K International volunteered to clean part of Bayou DeSiard that runs through campus.

About 20 students from TriBeta and Circle K participated.

The groups began cleaning at 9:30 a.m. and were mostly done by noon.

Margaret Adams, a senior biology major and vice president of TriBeta, said the group felt that coming to clean was part of their responsibility.

“A lot of activities happen on campus and sometimes the bayou can be ignored, so we want help out and just try to make the campus clean,” said Adams.

Alex Fields, a senior biology major and member of TriBeta, said the group has a special appreciation for its surrounding environment and should help keep it clean.

“As biology students, we study these kinds of things everyday, and we’re more informed on it than the general population,” said Fields.

Fields said that he saw a lot of plastic waste in the bayou, and something needs to change.

He added that the campus grounds are very well maintained, but somehow trash still ends up in the bayou.

“ULM’s done a great job, so there’s no real reason for anything to be lying around anywhere,” said Fields.

Chloe Sealy, a senior pre-pharmacy major and president of Circle K, said the opportunity to help out on campus fits with the group’s objectives.

“We decided it fit with what we’re trying to do.

Our motto is actually ‘live to serve, love to serve,’” said Sealy.

Sealy said Circle K is a service-based organization that anyone can join.

The water sweep is held annually each September and is hosted by Ouachita Green and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

According to the water sweep’s website, efforts that keep our waterways clean are “essential to the state’s environment and economy.”

Anyone can participate in the water sweep.

All you have to do to volunteer is show up at a designated cleaning location with a good attitude.

Organizers suggest wearing boots, sunscreen and bug spray and bringing gloves to your site.

To pre-register and possibly receive a t-shirt, volunteers can sign up online at watersweep.org.