Fighting Litter Around the UK: Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council
Fighting Litter Around the UK: Antrim And Newtownabbey Borough Council
This Northern Irish Council wants to send a message out loud and clear that it’s everyone’s job to help play a part in keeping the borough’s towns, villages, parks, and green spaces clean and pleasant places to be.
It’s working in partnership with the ‘Live Here Love Here’ campaign, which aims to improve local areas and build a sense of pride in communities. The campaign works for cleaner streets, less dog fouling and graffiti, more green space, and better use of unused or derelict buildings.
Live Here Love Here focuses it’s efforts on four key areas:
The campaign encourages individuals and groups to join in or host a clean up event to tackle the litter that blights towns, countryside, beaches, and parks. Anyone who hosts an event can get a free ‘clean up kit’ from the campaign and a certificate to thank them for taking part.
Between April and July last year, Antrim and Newtownabbey Council supported 34 Community Clean-ups by local groups and provided them with litter pickers, gloves, Hi-Vis jackets, rubbish bags, and removal of any bags of litter that have been collected.
The council asks groups to take photos of the clean up on the day that they can share to inspire others to take part in an event.
The campaign encourages people to carry out a gardening or planting scheme in their community to keep local areas looking beautiful and to improve biodiversity and health.
People are encouraged to spruce up any areas that are overgrown or where there is a lot of graffiti. If areas look derelict and run down, it can have a negative impact on residents and how an area looks.
The campaign runs ads on TV, billboards, bus, press, and social media advertising to spread its message and encourage people to get involved.
To achieve their aims, the campaign has run these big events, not only in Antrim and Newtownabbey, but across Northern Ireland.
The BIG Spring Clean
This is Northern Ireland’s largest community clean up campaign. Since it began, over half a million volunteers have taken part in clean ups and have collected a huge 800 tonnes of waste. Individuals, schools, community groups, and businesses are all encouraged to take part.
Adopt A Spot
The Adopt A Spot programme asks volunteers to adopt a local area and look after it. Volunteers are asked to carry out four clean ups a year of an area that needs a little help, be it a stretch of sand or a local park.
Clean Coasts is a programme sponsored by Coca-Cola which supports local people who are passionate about caring for their coastline and inland waterways.
The programme includes Clean Coasts Week, BIG Beach Clean, and other clean up events and activities geared towards improving the coastal environment.
Since January last year, over 2000 volunteers have cleaned up beaches, rivers, loughs, canals and reservoirs as part of the programme, and they’ve collected a staggering 1373 bags of litter. If you’re wondering, that equates to over 10,000 tonnes of waste!
Clean Coasts Week
Clean Coasts Week is packed full of events that encourage people to get outside and ‘feel go while doing good.’ Beach cleans are paired with other activities, and there’s a Clean Up and Drum Circle, a Beach Clean and Boot Camp, and a Sunset Yoga Litter Pick among others. Everyone is welcome, especially people who have never taken part in a clean up before. People can also organise litter picks in their own area, and they’ll receive a Clean Coasts Pack with a high vis vest, posters and a hints and tips booklet from the campaign.
Big Beach Clean
The Big Beach Clean runs from the 20th-22nd September each year. Volunteers can join in with an established event or register their own and get a free clean up kit including data cards to record the types of litter they find. The data collected is then shared with the Ocean Conservancy which contributes to a worldwide report on coastal litter hotspots and how litter can be tackled. The Big Beach Clean is part of the International Coastal Cleanup which has has brought together 13 million people from 150 countries to be part of the world’s largest clean-up effort to keep coastlines and waterways free from litter. To date, 250 million pounds of litter has been collected from coasts and waterways.