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ASEZ conducted a 'Zero Crime' Worldwide Street Cleanup Campaign as part of the Crime Prevention Project 'Reduce Crime Together' in North Dunedin, New Zealand.
The 16th goal of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), jointly adopted by the United Nations and the international community, is 'peace and justice'. According to the 2018 Sustainable Development Goals report, the world is in fear of armed conflict and other forms of violence. The United Nations has set up a detailed plan to reduce crime by 2030 such as violent deaths, child abuse and terrorism.
There has been a local movement to prevent crime by cleaning streets and also through the Leith River Graffiti Removal Campaign after the shootings in a Muslim Mosque in Christchurch forced governments to place police at Muslim places.
And recently, ASEZ, a university student volunteer group of The World Mission Society Church of God (Rev.Joo-cheol Kim, The Church of God https://wmscog.com/asez/ ) has been developing the global crime prevention project 'Reduce Crime Together'. Active in 175 countries, the project consists of activities for promoting awareness through seminars and forums, environmental clean-up campaigns for basic order compliance and global partnership activities for building crime prevention systems.
On the 8th of September, the "Zero Crime” street clean-up campaign was held at the North Ground in Dunedin. An ASEZ official said, "This cleanup movement means making the area a bright and pleasant environment and creating safe streets to thereby reduce crime. We encourage the participation of citizens as well as ASEZ members and seek to promote the awareness of the crime prevention efforts for our neighbors."
About 20 ASEZ members, their families, seniors and juniors, gathered with their intention to protect and enhance the local environment. They cleared a distance of 1.5 km from the North Ground to Clyde Street where the Mosque was located. The volunteers picked up all kinds of garbage such as cigarette butts, straws, cans, plastic wrapping paper, boxes, glass bottles, etc all around street-levels, gutters, bushes, hedges and footpaths. Those who came to the service in a bright manner cheerfully collected around 15 garbage bags.
Jacob (21), ASEZ member, said “for the zero crime campaign, I think such efforts will help remove hatred and promote understanding amongst each-other. I’m encouraged, seeing the volunteers of this event and warm sponsorship from the local community.”
Tane Mclean (19), a member of ASEZ, stated” we drove down from Christchurch with members for this event for a 2nd time and I feel strengthened and happy to see these cooperative and caring attitudes for making a safer city.”
ASEZ also held a ‘Zero Crime’ Campaign to clean up the streets in May. They cleared a distance of 1.5 km from the North Ground to Clyde Street and collected 20 garbage bags. In addition The Mother's Street cleanup campaign was also held in Grenada Village in Wellington. Vice Mayor of the City of Wellington and Peter Gilberg City Council member of the Environment Ministry encouraged ASEZ members.
These activities are being carried out all over the world, including in the United States, Canada, South Africa, Namibia, Mexico, Brazil, Singapore, the Philippines and the Republic of Korea: 175 countries are involved.
ASEZ, a university volunteer group of Church of God, is an international service organization: "ASEZ" means "Save the Earth from A to Z". Its main activity is the "SAVE Movement". It is an acronym for Social service, Awareness raising, Victim relief, and Environmental protection: environmental cleanup, disaster relief, blood donation relay, supporters, campaigns.
Thanks to God, the governments and institutions involved with ASEZ have expressed their willingness to cooperate and support each other. Last year, ASEZ members attended the "National Volunteer Day" held at the Presidential Palace by the invitation of President Michelle Teemer of Brazil. ASEZ was also invited to the United Nations-sponsored event on the occasion of "International Tolerance Day" and presented it as a subject of tolerance. Last year, ASEZ won the Gold Prize in the US Presidential Volunteer Award (Group Best Excellence Award) and the Green Apple Award in the international category.
- Scott Evangelou