Although our March litter pick had gone really well, only a few of our pickers were local to our area. The rest were our wonderful friends who are always amazing keen to support us and while I am very grateful, my aim for April and the following months was to get the word out to more of our neighbours.
I mentioned in my previous litter picking post that I had found some residential Facebook pages and after posting the results of the March pick together with photographs, I had lots of likes and a few people offering to help with the next one. I also registered the group with Litteraction.org and Keep Britain Tidy. All in all, out of 12 volunteers, there were six people who were unknown to me coming on our litter pick and that was great news.
I also contacted the local school to ask if they would be interested, but that is tricky as we pick on a Saturday so they couldn’t help us actually as a school event. However, they promoted the pick to their parents in case they wanted to join in with their children and we may organise a school litter pick one afternoon.
As we get more used to doing these events, we may need to do less preparation, but at the moment, we drive around looking at areas that may need attention, we prepare all the bags with the ring opening devices. These are great by the way, and for those who don’t know what they are or how they work, here are some pictures.
The rings come in two parts…..
You pull the edges of the bag up and over the black ring………..
……….and then push the green ring over that locking the ring in place and keeping the bag open. Clever stuff.
Next is to make sure there are spare bags for people to take with them, and I also printed out flyers and the small information cards for everyone so they all had my contact details. John and I had a rough plan of where to send the various teams as they arrived.
Despite the weather being pretty awful during the week, Saturday was bright and it was pleasing to see people arrive ready to pick.
I gave them a general chat about being safe – not picking up broken glass or syringes, or in fact anything they felt was unsafe for whatever reason. I also thanked them for coming, and then off everyone went. I hung around the meet point to wait for those who had been delayed.
Most of the area picked this time was around the residential streets, so there was less big stuff, no tyres etc., however, one of our pickers did find this……..
Yep, that’s a sledghammer, our best find this month. There was also rather a nice supermarket basket and far fewer glass bottles. this time.
This pick yielded fifteen bags of rubbish, sadly more general waste and fewer bags that could be recycled.
We did however meet some of our neighbours who we would not have met were it not for this event and that gave me a great feeling of community. This is the sort of thing I hoped would happen when I started Gift of Time – new experiences with new people.