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Liliya (Lily) Semenyuk is getting ready to graduate from Northwest University. She is majoring in Biology and Intercultural Studies. Before she graduates, she wanted to give something back to the community in which she has lived for the past four years. She found a way to give back to her adopted home of Kirkland by cleaning it up.
This semester, Northwest University students have been learning a bit about stewardship -- stewardship of the many different resources they have. Semenyuk thought a great way to implement the stewardship lessons in a practical way by volunteering to go through several parks, downtown, and the Houghton area, picking up any trash and cleaning Kirkland. The idea included the student body as a way to be good stewards to the city in which they live.
On Saturday, April 9th, a group of about twenty five students donning green "Kleaning Kirkland" shirts, panned out to downtown, Lake Washington Blvd and several Kirkland parks with trash bags in hand.
The students were joined in their efforts by Kirkland City Council member Bob Sternoff. Sternoff first learned of the "Kleaning Kirkland" effort from a letter Semenyuk had written to the City Council and was pleased to be a part of the effort.
"For me, service is not work--it's fun! I find joy in serving others, and this is just a small token of what I'd like to give back to the community after practically living here for four years while attending Northwest." says Semenyuk. "Even though we do not always see or even think about all that the city does for us so that we can live safely and comfortably, I know it takes a lot of hard, behind-the-scenes work."
Semenyuk dreams of someday becoming a doctor in India, but she says, "only time will tell where God will lead. Either way, I know it will include my passion to serve others, although exactly in what capacity--I'm not sure yet."
A special thank you goes out to the sponsors of this event. Sponsors include, in no particular order: Waste Management, QFC, Safeway, NU Student Senate, and Starbucks.
Semenyuk also wants to acknowledge the cooperative help received from the City of Kirkland. They have been extremely helpful in seeing this project come to fruition.