ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – On a recent visit to the Swan Creek Greenway Trail, 9-year-old Allanha Menna noticed piles of trash in the woods.

“I saw all the trash, and I said it wasn’t okay,” Menna said.

When it rains, runoff brings litter from a nearby industrial and commercial area to the edge of the trail near where it dead ends into Highway 72. Menna told News 19 she wanted to help clean up the area.

“It endangers animals and their habitats, and it’s just gross,” Menna said.

She employed the help of her dad, Dakota Menna, who called Keep Limestone Athens Beautiful, an organization dedicated to empowering citizens to enhance their community environment. Keep Limestone Athens Beautiful donated a dumpster and gloves, and the Mennas planned a Saturday cleanup.

“I think as parent we’re really required to set the standard, and also empower them to be the change they want to see in the world,” said Dakota Menna. “When she came to me, I wanted to make sure we did what we could.”

Courtesy: Dakota Menna

With the help of additional family members, the Mennas picked up old tires, food wrappers and scrap metal in the greenway on Saturday. All total, 16 bags of trash, 5 tires, and half of a toilet made their way into the dumpster.

Courtesy: Dakota Menna

Dakota Menna said he grew up exploring these woods and playing in the creek, and the best thing he could do is preserve the area for his family’s future.

These before and after pictures show a lot of progress, but Allahna Menna said they are not finished yet.

Courtesy: Dakota Menna

“We still have a little bit left to do, I’m really hoping we can finish it,” Menna said.

The Mennas said they hope other members of the community help them in the future.