Sam, the four-legged superhero, works to keep a park clean and green in Chile’s capital. His
superpower? He was collecting garbage as a role model for visitors.
It all started when Sam and Gonzalo Chiang had to stop in the city’s largest green area, again and again, to pick up plastic bottles, masks, cans, and food packages.
“On Sam’s walks, we began to find a lot of garbage,” Chiang uttered in an interview. “From that, they need to come prepared to take away the garbage we found on each visit arose” he added.
According to an official count, for just the month of April, Sam and Gonzalo collected 602 masks, 585 bottles, and 304 cans in addition to clothing, helmets, and food wrappers. “The walk is a good opportunity to clean, rather than litter,” Chiang said.
Sam visits the tourist attraction at least three times a week. The park officials were impressed and decided to use his image in its park care campaign.
The Border Collie, who takes regular walks in Santiago’s metropolitan park with his owner, has also become famous for wearing a green cape in a comic used as an educational guide.
Catalina Aravena turned the Collie into a cartoon in “Sam: The Parquemet Superhero,” telling visitors to take their waste with them or use one of more than 40 recycling points throughout the park.
“This became much more widespread than expected,” Aravena added. “It reached different schools and spread very well on social media.”
The park – home to a zoo, several hiking trails, and a funicular railway – launched anti-litter campaigns last year urging drink vendors to switch from plastic to glass cups, and started classifying garbage into separate bins.
“Sam and Gonzalo have inspired us to accelerate this education process and structure this
garbage classification,” said Eduardo Villalobos, the park’s acting director.