What can be done?
Unfortunately streets, neighbourhoods and some public spaces become unsightly due to dropped litter, overgrown vegetation and fly tipping. As often happens in back streets, where old carpets and other household items gather with litter and detritus there becomes a need to do something about it.
It is often difficult to identify who is responsible for a messy and dirty backstreet. However must residents will agree that something needs to be done.
The above took place in Bankfoot in the summer of 2015. The difference made in a day surprised everyone and brought everyone together.
People Can ….. Organise a Neighbourhood Clean-up!
Community clean-ups can really improve your local area, are a good way to meet local people and can be fun!
Here are some tips to help you make it happen.
Plan your clean-up
- Identify the area you want to clear up and talk to your neighbours.
- Pick a date when you’re all available.
- Map the area out so everybody knows what they are focused on.
- Be aware of any risks including steep banks, roads with heavy traffic, waterways with deep or fast flowing water etc. If these are present talk to the Council before you start.
- If you organise a litter pick with neighbours, friends or people from a group you are involved with the Council can offer to help.
Help the Council can offer
- A Council Warden can visit to help you with your plans
- The Council will provide you with a litter picking pack that includes:
- Litter pickers
- Green bags
- Information about safety
- Hi-viz tabards
- If on private land, gain permission from the land owner. If you are not sure who owns the land you can get details from land registry via gov.uk/government/organisations/land-registry or ring their customer support on 0300 006 0411.
Get the word out!
- Let the community know the time and place to meet, and how long you intend to be there.
- Local business may be able to help support your clean-up by providing materials, services or a donation.
- Community spaces are good places to promote your activity. Print and put up posters in local schools, places of worship or community centres.
- Use social media such as Facebook or Twitter.
- Create a sign-up sheet and get phone numbers from volunteers in case plans change.
- Consider inviting the media to cover you clean up.
Before you start, let everyone know the location of the first aid kit, and any areas to avoid. Make sure everyone is dressed appropriately with gloves, closed-toe shoes and sunscreen if needed. Let everyone know where the start and finish meeting points are.
- Celebrate! You have done a great thing
Encourage others to do the same
Your litter pick will have made a difference to the area you have worked on. However for an even bigger impact consider trying to influence others to do the same as you.
- Take photos of the site before and after the clean-up.
- Write a few words describing what you have done (include the area you cleaned, the number of bags collected and the people, organisations and businesses that helped. Put copies up where you put your posters so people can see the great work you and your volunteers have done.
- Post your story on social media or ask someone else to do it for you. Place it on https://www.facebook.com/PeopleCanBradford/