All it takes is someone to say, “enough is enough” and begin to work within a community to eliminate unsightly, costly eyesores.
Now that you have the desire, here are a few steps to help you get started on your projects.
All Aboard the Cleanup Cause Organize a cleanup committee by seeking out a few people who share your passion for the cause. Set a meeting date and let the ideas flow. Decide which project everyone wants to tackle.
We’re Talking Trash, Transportation and Recycling Contact your local Sanitation or Public Works department. They can advise you on the special trash bags or receptacles you may need and any other special requirements.
Beauty and the Businesses Turn to local business owners to support your efforts. Ask them to donate supplies (flowers, bulbs, paint and brushes, t-shirts, refreshments) and provide window space for posters announcing your program. They can even rally their own employees to help.
Enlist the Tall and the Small Reach out to local scout troops, church groups and other community organizations; ask them to roll up their sleeves and get involved. Also, contact local radio, newspaper and television stations. Alert them about your project/event.
Clean Your Slate for a Working Date Set dates for your activities. Saturday mornings (8am to noon) are best, with an alternate rain date the following weekend. Make sure that an activity you are planning is not the same day as another community event, especially one that relies on volunteers.
Check Your To Do List Make a checklist of the equipment you will need to remove litter, clean up and beautify an area. Ask volunteers to bring some of their own equipment and encourage them to wear sunscreen, proper clothing, sturdy shoes and heavy work gloves.
Couldn’t Have Done It Without You! Celebrate your achievements and say thank you to your volunteers for an important job well done. Host a picnic after the activities are complete and include local officials, business owners, community and civic groups that helped you. Remember to recognize all of their contributions through media and personal communications.
Be Creative – Have Fun! The possibilities for projects are endless. The choice to make a difference is yours. So, roll up your sleeves and have fun. Your efforts to improve your community will become a source of pride for everyone!
Suggestions to get your imagination started:
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Host a tree planting party
- Put a new coat of paint on a graffiti-marked wall
- Adopt a road with your friends and plant flowers
- Sponsor a litter collection contest
- Clean up a river or field that has become an illegal dumping site
- Collect recyclable and reusable items on your block; deliver to a recycling center.