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Second Gentleman Emhoff, Mayor Scott work with volunteers to reclaim West Baltimore lot

Volunteers reclaimed a vacant lot in West Baltimore Thursday
Volunteers reclaimed a vacant lot in West Baltimore Thursday 01:49

BALTIMORE -- Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff was in Baltimore on Thursday to get his hands dirty and make the city greener.

Emhoff said several times during his visit that the work he saw at the intersection of Ramsay and Calhoun Streets is what needs to be happening across the country.

"We are reclaiming this vacant lot . . . You're gonna have a bunch of trees here," he said. "You're gonna have benches. You're gonna have water flowing through."

Emhoff worked side by side with volunteers from Americorps/Civic Works.

"This is part of an investment into our communities to make them healthier, safer," he said. "You heard about the urban farming, so we can eliminate the food deserts."

The effort aims to reverse the impact of climate change.

"This is the work that these folks do each and every day. . . . We are preparing ourselves to have a world that will be here for generations to come," Mayor Brandon Scott said.

The volunteers involved in the process are using what they've learned with Americorps to turn their lives around.

"I was lost at first, you know. I didn't know what I wanted to do," Zuri Kelly of the Civic Works Youth Build Program said. "I kind of just wanted to play my horn but I found a career. And I love it."

Kelly is looking to obtain the skills necessary to be a business owner.

Together they transformed a corner of Southwest Baltimore into something beautiful.

Emhoff directed attention to Democrats in Washington who are pushing a new billion-dollar deal to combat climate change.

"That is the start but by no means the end,"he said. "We need to just keep investing in things that will protect our world."

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