Chrisell is an 8 year old girl from the Wirral, whose favourite activity would surprise many. She is cleaning traffic signs in her area and her work has had an amazing impact on all road users in her district. Keep reading to find out more about this young star.
Chrisell, cleaning signs is definitely an extraordinary hobby for an 8-year-old or frankly, anyone! When did you start noticing that traffic signs are in a poor state?
When I was six, I was travelling to Wales with my family and we were trying to find directions to the caravan park but most of the street signs were covered in green mold making it very difficult to find our way. During that holiday I decided that I wanted to clean signs and make a difference.
Are you doing this project alone or do you have a community of little champions around yourself?
I mainly do this with help from my family. However, I had help on the odd occasion and I know that there are window cleaners on the Wirral that do sign cleaning in between jobs.
Signs are usually placed in hard-to-get-to, even dangerous sites (because of traffic). Not to mention they are quite high. How difficult is it to clean a sign and what equipment do you need?
Safety is super important, so I use a hi-vis vest when cleaning by the roadside. I use a window cleaning brush that extends over 3 metres high to reach the very high signs (sometimes my dad needs to help). I use a big pressure water bottle to spray the signs and I use an environmentally friendly cleaning solution. Some of the signs are coated in a thick, sticky green slime (mostly from the trees) which means I need to really RUB HARD. My dad has a special solution that I use to remove graffiti.
Wirral council replaced a broken sign you were sent and unable to fix. Do you feel like traffic signs are given more attention thanks to your engagement?
It seems that in our area Wirral Council have replaced/repainted a lot of signs since I started reporting it.
I noticed your work extends beyond traffic signs. A month ago you cleaned benches on the promenade and picked litter on a local beach. I am curious, what do you consider the most appalling problem today?
People not caring about their community, environment and animal life.
Your amazing volunteering activities were recently recognized by Community Action Wirral. Are there any other awards you are proud of?
I received recognition from a fantastic organisation called 52 Lives-School of Kindness (they believe that being kind is the most important thing a child can be) and also from a local group called Compassionate Wirral. I have been on Radio Merseyside thrice and it was a fantastic experience! I am also very proud of my dance and drama awards and my Year 3 Effort Award from school.
Can you tell us who is your greatest role model in your environmental activism?
My mum and dad. They have taught me the importance of looking after my community and environment. They always try their best to help others but never mention it.
Do you have any message for our readers?
Please care for each other and your environment; be proud of where you live. Also, support your local businesses (I report about local businesses on my Brushing Beautiful Facebook page) as well as the drama and art industry; they need our support now more than ever.
Thank you Chrisell, you are an inspiration to us and many others! Keep it up.