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Two Portland women start 'Tuesdays for Trash' movement

The women want to encourage others to take a walk on Tuesdays and pick up trash along the way

PORTLAND, Ore. — Sharona Shnayder and Wanda McNealy were on a walk in the North Park Blocks in early May when they had an idea.

Pick up trash and hang out together at the same time.

"I think Wanda mentioned we should do this every week as a way to hang out and bond. Then I was like, why doesn't everyone do this every week," Shnayder said.

After that moment, the pair started 'Tuesdays for Trash,' a global movement to bring people all over the world together to better improve the world we live in. Tuesdays for Trash believes, "that small acts of change, when multiplied, can transform the world."

"I think the biggest eye opener is how quickly you fill up a bag of trash. I think we walk around every day not really paying attention to the trash that's around. Once you do you realize how large the problem is and how quickly you can make a difference," Shnayder said.

The movement has picked up some steam around the world.

"We've had people pick up trash in six continents so far so we'd love to make our way to Antarctica one day to do a Tuesdays for Trash out there," McNealy said.

For the month of July, Tuesdays for Trash wants to target cigarette butts.

"There's 4.5 trillion cigarette butts discarded each year, which is astronomical. We're gonna try keep the streets of Portland clean," says McNealy. "Our first day, just focusing on cigarette butts earlier this month. We each picked up 3 or 400 alone."

"It's really serious. Most of the litter we pick is usually cigarette butts," Shnayder says.

In just seven walks across the past seven Tuesdays, they've collected over thirty bags from short one hour walks around Portland. It's already had an impact on them.

"This movement has definitely opened my eyes to how careless we have become and how much work needs to be done," McNealy said.

They want to hear from you, just tag @TuesdaysforTrash on Instagram to share your trash pickup story.

"We just want to encourage individuals every day. Walk with intention and if you see trash, even if we all picked up one piece it would definitely make a difference," McNealy said.

RELATED: Grassroots effort helps clean up Portland after protests

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