in a spirited bid to promote a healthier, cleaner environment, Baguio City is set to join the global observance of World No Tobacco Day on May 31. This year, the city’s Smoke-Free Task Force, in collaboration with various local
organizations, is spearheading a community-wide plogging event aimed at cleaning up cigarette butts and other litter
while raising awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco use. The day will kick off with an assembly from 7:30 to 8:00 AM, where participants will gather for a short briefing.

The head of each participating office, organization, barangay, or group will lead a prayer, outlining the objectives of the activity, and discussing the harmful effects of smoking. Detailed instructions on the plogging activity will be
provided to ensure smooth execution. From 8:10 to 9:10 AM, participants will engage in the plogging activity. They will jog or walk through designated areas, collecting trash and segregating cigarette butts into empty plastic bottles. Each bottle will be labeled to indicate the location where the butts were collected, aiding in the identification of litter hotspots across the city.

Following the plogging activity, a short program will be held from 9:10 AM to 12:00 NN at the SF Garden near Baguio City Hall. This session is optional for those who are in the vicinity and will feature discussions and reflections
on the day’s efforts. Participants are encouraged to bring essential items such as trash bags, empty plastic bottles,
tongs, gloves, markers, and handwashing supplies. This ensures safety and efficiency in collecting and segregating waste. The mechanics of the event are structured to ensure effective participation and impactful outcomes.

Participants will engage in trash collection and segregation, focusing particularly on gathering cigarette butts, which will be carefully deposited into labeled plastic bottles. To facilitate organization, volunteers, officemates, classmates, and advocates are encouraged to form groups and select designated routes for the activity. Prior to commencing the cleanup, a brief session will be conducted to provide participants with essential information regarding objectives, routes, and endpoints. Following the cleanup efforts, participants will meticulously document the trash and cigarette butts collected, ensuring proper separation of regular waste from hazardous materials.

Additionally, participants are urged to actively engage in social media platforms by posting their activities on Facebook, tagging Smoke-Free Baguio, or by sending their documentation via messenger or email to [email protected]. The Smoke-Free Community Task Force invites everyone—barangay officials, health centers, schools, the police, regional agencies, neighborhood organizations, public and private offices, cooperatives, and other local entities—to join this impactful event. By participating, individuals contribute to a cleaner environment and a healthier community, protecting children from the influences of the tobacco industry.

This initiative highlights Baguio City’s commitment to environmental protection and public health. By tackling the issue of cigarette butt litter, the city not only beautifies its surroundings but also reduces the harmful impact of tobacco waste. World No Tobacco Day serves as a powerful reminder of the collective efforts needed to combat tobacco use and its detrimental effects on health and the environment. Juannah Rae Basilio/UC-Intern

Amianan Balita Ngayon