Cleanup and BBQ Bring the Community Together

Clearwater Scientology Volunteer Ministers and volunteers from the Martin Luther King Jr., Center join forces to spruce up the neighborhood.

Dozens of Volunteer Ministers, some recently returned home from the Florida Panhandle where they responded to Hurricane Michael, gathered at the Martin Luther King Jr., Center in North Greenwood to take part in a monthly neighborhood cleanup.

Their ranks swelled as they moved through the community where local residents joined in.

Several hours later, after disposing of 60 bags of trash, two dozen tires, almost as many TV sets, nine couches, three mattresses, two desks and a nightstand, they all returned to the MLK center for a get-together and barbecue, where they planned future activities to further upgrade the North Greenwood Community.

Dozens of Volunteer Ministers
Dozens of Volunteer Ministers participated in the cleanup

North Greenwood is a Clearwater, Florida, municipal zone of over 7,000 residents located half a mile from the center of downtown Clearwater.

Known as a cultural hub decades ago, in recent years North Greenwood declined. Alarmed over rising crime, in July 2015, local residents came together to upgrade the area with projects to improve the neighborhood. Monthly neighborhood cleanups were among the projects launched at that time. The National Crime Prevention Council lists cleanups as a community initiative that can reduce crime, and that has certainly proved true in Greenwood, where crime dropped 56 percent in the neighborhood in the first year of the cleanups.

The Church of Scientology Volunteer Minister program is a religious social service created in the mid-1970s by L. Ron Hubbard. Anyone of any culture or creed may train as a Volunteer Minister and use these tools to help their families and communities. The Church provides free online training on the Volunteer Ministers website.

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.

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