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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Japanese tourist joins PDM Promoters’ cleanup

Over 30 volunteers of PDM Promoters, Inc. pose for a group photo before the start of their monthly cleanup in Garapan last Saturday. The group collected a total of 720 lbs of trash. Other photo shows Kensuke Ogasawara, right, a retired Japanese businessman visiting the island, joining Saipan Awaodori member Darvince Manalo in picking up trash during PDM Promoters, Inc.'s monthly cleanup in Garapan on Dec. 8. (Contributed Photo) A Japanese tourist who regularly visits Saipan joined volunteers of PDM Promoters, Inc. for their monthly cleanup in Garapan last Dec. 8.

Retired businessman Kensuke Ogasawara was the second tourist to help the volunteer group pick up trash along Coral Tree Avenue to the Garapan Fire Station on to Beach Road up to Joeten Hafa Adai Shopping Center, said Sonia Siwa of PDM Promoters, Inc.

The group was composed of 26 members of the Saipan Awaodori and eight Kinpachi staff and collected a total of 720 lbs during their December cleanup.

Siwa said yesterday that Ogasawara, whose company operates several restaurants in Japan, is familiar with the Saipan Awaodori team, having watched them a number of times during his visits to Saipan.

An avid golfer, Ogasawara visits Saipan at least three times a year, according to Siwa.

She said they informed 73-year-old Ogasawara about the Saturday cleanup when he dined at Kinpachi restaurant in Garapan, which is close to the hotel where he stays.

“He immediately expressed interest to join the cleanup, showing up last Saturday to help pick up trash under the sun for two hours,” Siwa told Saipan Tribune.

Ogasawara’s interest in the activity, Siwa said, shows the value of the group’s community service.

“The Awaodori members were really happy to meet Mr. Ogasawara,” she added.

Siwa expressed hope that with a tourist’s interest in the cleanup, residents and business establishments would be encouraged to join efforts in maintaining the cleanliness of the island in support of its No. 1 industry.

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