Will Yakima ever see the end of graffiti? Dozens volunteer to clean it up

Will Yakima ever see the end of graffiti? Dozens volunteer to clean it up
YAKIMA, Wash. -- KIMA is always tracking graffiti in your neighborhood, taking your calls and reporting on the latest hot spots.

At times, it seems like a problem without a permanent solution.

However on Saturday, a group of volunteers of all ages decided to take a stand against the vandalism.

Some Stanton Academy students up bright and early. They volunteered to clean up graffiti that recently showed up near their new school on River Road.

"Not really nice to look at. It's a mess,” Melissa Trontvet said.
Graffiti is a consistent problem in Yakima. The volunteers are trying to make a dent in it.

Stanton Academy School Resource Officer, Nate Henyan, lead the group.

"The faster we get it covered up, the better we make the neighborhood look,” Nate said.

From commercial buildings to homes, at the same time across town a different group of volunteers helped clean up a southern Yakima neighborhood. They are with Yakima's Neighborhood Development program. The director says they clean graffiti 5 days a week. During summer months, they re-paint up to 25 senior-citizens homes- many tagged with graffiti.

"It feels good,” said Bertha Rance, the homeowner who's house was painted. “It feels good to have them help me out."

"I've lived here all my life, in the Valley, so it's just a good thing to do and it's stuff I like to do” said volunteer, Gene Soules.

The volunteers gave their time to make the city a better place. Some think the effort might throw a wrench in graffiti’s vicious cycle.

"If we clean up their mess and we keep doing it, eventually they will stop,” Melissa said.

The Stanton crew says it now plans to hold graffiti clean-ups on a regular basis.

The city of Yakima provided most of the paint.