NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB)– It all started with a Facebook post, asking for help cleaning up the neighborhood near 13th and Ashland in Niagara Falls.
The social media plea took off, and several volunteers showed up to help.
Three days after the post, the sidewalks are clean, overgrown weeds are trimmed, and abandoned homes that used to be filled with trash, are empty.
Ashland Avenue resident Michael Davis made the post out of frustration.
“A lot of kids are out here running around, having nothing to do, they’re running through fields of garbage or trash, you know, needles and all different kinds of things,” Davis told News 4.
“I was frankly tired of it,” he said.
So he got to work.
“I picked up a rake, I picked up a lawnmower, and got out here and started getting it going,” Davis said.
A few of his friends came by, and that quickly snowballed. Neighbors are getting involved too.
Since the community clean-up kicked off a few days ago, nine of the vacant homes on the block have been cleared out.
“When you go to Canada, Niagara Falls, Canada, it’s beautiful. But then when you come to Niagra Falls, New York, everybody’s like ugh,” said Derrick Florence, one of the volunteers.
The group wants to change that, and word is quickly getting around.
“I’d heard on Facebook that there was something really wonderful happening here on Ashland Avenue,” Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster said.
He stopped by Monday and Tuesday to support the clean-up efforts.
Davis told News 4 he’d not looking for much.
He and his friends are feeding volunteers, but he told News 4 they’re in need of extra tools.
“We’re going to have out DPW crews come through here and if there are things they can’t do they don’t have the right tools or equipment, we’re going to try to finish the job for them,” Dyster said.
“We’re doing a little bit to help them out but this is mostly just their effort. It’s really heartwarming,” he continued.
The group said they plan to clean-up other parts of the Falls once they’ve addressed Ashland Avenue.
If you have tools you’re able to donate, call Michael Davis at 716-284-6973.