manhattan marsh kids in trucksmallPoison Ivy, ticks, sweat and trash. Sounds miserable, right? That is what about 50 4th-7th grade students from Chase Elementary School and Owens Corning volunteers endured to remove about five dumpsters of trash and two dumpsters of just tires from Manhattan Marsh. On Thursday and Friday, May 16th and 17th, these dedicated volunteers removed all types of trash from Manhattan Marsh behind Chase Elementary School during the Owens Corning Day of Caring.  Previously a dumping site for industries and private individuals, this marsh was degraded with various types of trash ranging from tires, parts of boats, and industrial waste to everyday household items such as beverage bottles, food wrappers and plastic bags. Lead by Owens Corning, Partners for Clean Streams, Toledo Metroparks, City of Toledo, Citizens for Buckeye Basin, United North and many other partners, these volunteers took on cleaning up the marsh in addition to installing a rain garden and a bird sanctuary for the school. Manhattan Marsh is 70 acres and home to various uncommon plants and animals but is surrounded by urban homes, businesses and busy roads making the marsh a sanctuary for wildlife. Soon, the Chase Elementary School will be able to use the marsh as a powerful learning tool. Being in nature, caring for it and learning from it has been proven to reduce stress, increase focus, boost grades and many other positive benefits for all ages of students. This is in addition to hands on learning and applying textbook theories to real life examples. This is also great opportunity for the community as a future park and green space. We are grateful that Owens Corning took on this project and wish them the best of luck in the future.