Jordan Roff moved into the neighborhood of Jeffries Point a little over a year ago and immediately noticed a very solvable problem,
Roff, 31, and a student said he was shocked at the amount of trash and litter on his new street so this summer he decided to act.
“I saw a need for more cleanliness in East Boston and thought if residents worked together we can take ownership of the neighborhood,” said Roff.
Each Saturday for the past two weeks Roff, sometimes joined by a friend or neighbor, has been walking up and down Sumner Street picking up garbage and litter as well as removing weeds from sidewalks and tree pits.
“The reaction has been positive and people have stopped by to encourage us and asking us how they can get involved,” said Roff. “I think if we can get more people interested and work with the city and community groups we can change the culture here and residents can take ownership of the streets.”
Each Saturday Roff, and whomever wants to join him, begins the cleanup efforts in front of the former 303 Café on Sumner Street at 3 p.m. Roff brings trash bags, gloves, rakes and brooms and the team gets to work.
“It really doesn’t take that long and the difference at the end is huge,” said Roff Saturday while grabbing garbage from the gutter on Sumner Street. “Today we pulled weeds out and cleaned up the litter. In the future I’d love to be able to partner with the city to maybe get some mulch and do all the tree pits on the street.”
Roff has applauded the efforts of community groups like East Boston Main Streets and elected officials like City Councilor Sal LaMattina for their efforts cleaning areas of the neighborhood and only wants to help them in these efforts.
“I thought I could help out and this could be a fun social activity for neighbors here to get together and get to know one another,” said Roff.
Roff has launched an email address so interested resident can contact him and pitch in to keep the neighborhood clean.
“It’s SumnerSaturdayStreetSweep@gmail.com and residents can also contact me at 617-945-4745 if they want to find out more info on the weekly cleanups,” said Roff.
Roff’s efforts have caught the eye of Councilor LaMattina who applauded his efforts and has long encouraged these types of neighborhood cleanups.
“I’ve always said the city can’t do it alone and we need residents and business owners to go out and make sure the front of their homes or stores are clean,” said LaMattina. “Jordan is doing a good job and I hope more residents are encouraged by his efforts and get involved because together we can keep East Boston clean.”