Mother and daughter use break from school to clean up trash around Windsor

A mother and daughter are passing their time during the pandemic by doing some cleanup around the City of Windsor.

“Garbage is everywhere and it’s something that rubs me the wrong way,” Natalie Litt said while standing in a ditch off the side of Grand Marais road.

“I’ve been seeing this area for about two years and it’s obviously not getting cleaned up so I need to be proactive and I need to be an example.”

Back in March, Natalie challenged her daughter Hazel to 21 days garbage pickup — the same amount of time she would be out of class. Those 21 days have passed and they’re still getting out to pick up trash, but not every day. 

“She decided to do it for the 21 days, so I just kind of tagged along,” Hazel said, acknowledging that she enjoys doing something good for the community.

Natalie Litt challenged her 13-year-old daughter Hazel to 21 days of trash pick up while she’s out of school, 21 days have passed and they’re still going. (Jacob Barker/CBC)

“It’s not too bad. I’d rather like, call my friends and stuff — but I don’t have a lot to do,” she said.

She also took the chance to call out her three brothers, who’ve opted to skip the garbage pick up.

“They don’t do anything,” she said. “They just play video games all the time.”

The pair have been all over the city to pick up trash, including in some of the green spaces, like the Grand Marais trail, where Natalie said it was good to get a bit of space. 

“A little bit of wildlife, away from people and just out in the city air and the city environment but a little bit removed,” she said. 

Natalie and Hazel Litt working hard picking up trash in the ditch by Grand Marais road. (Jacob Barker/CBC)

And while the pair do have to leave the house to get the job done, they are not coming close to other people.

“We’re further from people than people at Costco and Shoppers right now,” Natalie said. 

Doing good

While the pair are doing their work for the community in Windsor, their thoughts are with a family member who is also doing good across the border. 

Natalie’s brother and Hazel’s uncle Corey Mayer, a doctor, is working in the ICU at Beaumont hospital in Michigan, on the front lines in the fight against COVID-19.

“We haven’t seen him in a long time. It’s tough,” Natalie said, tearing up.

“He’s going to call me out on it — tell me I’m a sap.” 

Corey Mayer (right) is a 28-year-old doctor working at Beaumont Hospital in Michigan. (Facebook/Natalie Litt)

Mayer said she’s staying in touch with her brother by text but the family worries about him anyway.

“We’d really like to see him but we can’t,” she said. 

Hazel sees the sacrifice her uncle is making working in a state where so many have been infected.

“It is kind of like dangerous, I think … but we miss him,” she said. 

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