Here's How You Can Win Over P650K Just by Cleaning Up Your Sidestreets

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With the complex and neverending problems we read about on the Internet these days, from fake news to privacy issues, it’s refreshing to see good news come out of it once in a while.

One such example is the #trashtag movement, a cause ignited by a single photo posted on Facebook by Byron Roman last March. The photo is a before and after look of an area that was previously trashed and then later cleaned up, with Algerian activist and ecologist Drici Tani Young in the middle, seemingly suggesting he was behind the improvement.

Accompanying the photo is a caption encouraging teens to do the same: “Here is a new #challenge for you bored teens. Take a photo of an area that needs some cleaning or maintenance then take a photo after you have done something about it, and post it.”

Since then, the post has been shared on Facebook 333,000 times, with over 77,000 likes. On Instagram, the hashtag #trashtag has already been used more than 78,000 times, accompanying photos of people cleaning up various places, from backyards to nearby parks.


The CEO of Freelancing and jobs marketplace platform, Matt Barrie, recently noticed the movement and has committed $12,500 (around P650,000) to the cause with a contest of his own. Until May 11, anyone with a Freelancer account may upload photos of their clean-up efforts on Freelancer’s contest website for a chance to win the pot prize.

“About a month ago I saw Byron Roman had started #trashtag trending on Reddit. We wanted to help and have put up $12,500 to the best clean up effort on the planet,” Barrie said in a statement.

So far,’s Clean Up the World Movement contest has received 91 entries, mostly from Asian countries, including the Philippines.

Surely, there are a lot of areas that can be cleaned up in the country. Early this year, a new study by the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) revealed “Filipinos use more than 163 million plastic sachet packets, 48 million shopping bags, and 45 million thin film bags daily.” Those sachet packets can occupy the entire Metro Manila, according to the same study.

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Fortunately, there are a number of ways to reduce the use of plastic or waste, for that matter, and lead more sustainable lifestyles. Besides, with or without a cash prize, wouldn’t we want to enjoy a cleaner environment, too?

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Elyssa Christine Lopez
Elyssa Christine Lopez is a staff writer of Esquire. Follow her on Twitter @elyssalopz
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