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Dad, daughter work together to clear litter

There are two rubbish bins next to the letter boxes at the block of flats in Sengkang where Mr Barry Heng lives.

Yet, when he returns home from work in the evening, there are usually flyers scattered all over the floor.

Since he moved in two years ago, Mr Heng would pick up these flyers and dispose of them properly.

The 40-year-old IT consultant said: "I just do it. If I can help, I'll just try my best to help. I think it's about personal responsibility. If everyone thinks it's not their business, there'll always be litter."

While Mr Heng does not think his efforts are a big deal, his eight-year-old daughter, Gladys, is so proud of him that she now helps him pick up the litter when she follows him to collect their mail.

The Primary 3 pupil said: "Singapore's a clean and green country. I'm upset that some people litter."

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While her parents are worried about the idea of her approaching litterbugs to pick up their trash, Gladys is unfazed.

The feisty girl said: "If I see someone littering, I'll say: 'Can you pick it up, you are dirtying the environment.'"

Mr Heng's wife, Madam Phoebe Lau, 37, a student-care teacher, said: "I think kids should be taught from a young age that they should pick up after themselves. If they see the adults doing it, they'll follow too."

Mr Heng also makes it a point to pick up litter when he goes to the beach. Once, he managed to fill up two bags of trash within an hour, he recalled.

He admits there were times when he felt discouraged by the repeated scenes of litter at his block.

"The litter just kept coming back. Once, I even stopped picking up litter for a few days," he said.

"But perhaps when others see me picking up the flyers, they will feel bad and think twice about littering."