As the weather continues to get nicer and the days get longer, we can look forward to spending more time outside of our homes. The only problem is, what if your outdoor areas aren’t exactly the most beautiful landscapes? Whether through malice or ignorance, sometimes these bastions of nature can become a hotbed for trash and waste products. It’s a sad but seemingly inevitable part of humans living in close proximity to one another.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t do something about it. Communities everywhere regularly band together to take back their natural spaces from pollution and litter. Organizing a community into action can be a difficult process, but we know how crucial it is for the long-term health of the land we live on. To help you get started off on the right foot, we’ve compiled a few tips for organizing a community cleanup to help reclaim the beautiful parts of your community.
Decide On the Right Project
The first thing you need to do when you decide that you want to clean up your community is figure out exactly how you want to do it. You have multiple options here, and they all have different challenges and benefits. Your options include:
- River cleaning
- Beautification projects
- Highway cleanup
- Trash and litter collection
- Landscaping project
Whatever you decide to do, it should be something that you’re comfortable spending time and money on. Tackling a project you’re not immediately passionate about will only make your enthusiasm for it dwindle over time. You also want to make sure that you fill in a niche that isn’t already taken up by another organization if you want to do as much good as possible.
Make a Detailed Plan
Planning is a crucial step in making sure your project has the desired effect on your community. While every project will be different, there are a few things you should keep in mind no matter what your project may entail. They are:
- A date and time that works for the majority of people
- Backup plans for weather and other unforeseen circumstances
- The specific area you will work in
- Any supplies you need to run the project efficiently
- A list of any licenses or permits you need to gather before you begin
The more details you can plan out ahead of time, the less likely you are to run into a problem that has no immediate solution.
Recruit Early and Often
As soon as you know what you want to do and when you want to do it, you should head out and recruit as soon as possible. One of the best tips for organizing a community cleanup we can give is to start this process early. This will give your volunteers as much time as possible to plan and prep themselves for the big day. Word-of-mouth advertising is very important, but you should also consider posting flyers around town, posting on local social media boards, and asking local organizations for help promoting the event.
Elect a Competent Leader
If you know you can handle the project yourself, then this step will be easy. As the organizer, it’s up to you to make sure everyone knows their job, and the project goes smoothly. However, if leading isn’t your thing, don’t be afraid to elect someone else to be the person in charge. Some volunteers may want to take on more responsibility. Knowing who to turn to with questions will put your volunteers at ease and make delegating easier on everyone.
Donations could mean cash donations from local organizations, but they could also mean donations in the form of equipment and supplies. Asking for supplies from a place such as a hardware store may be a great way to get what you need for your beautification project. Even your local town government may want to help or have programs that assist people attempting to better the community. It’s also okay to ask your volunteers to bring some of their own supplies, as long as it’s nothing too expensive or bulky.
Specify Tasks for Each Person
A quick way for a community cleanup to go nowhere is when no one knows what they should do. Without proper direction, volunteers may just stand around wondering about it and being unproductive. Before the day arrives, you should have a list of specific tasks or goals that you want to achieve. By assigning people to certain areas or goals, you can give your volunteers direction and keep the project moving forward without any need for you to helicopter over people.
Set the Event Schedule
Another important part of planning the big day is the schedule you and your volunteers will follow. If you don’t have a specific start or end time, the project can feel disjointed and unfocused. While delays will certainly happen, sticking to a strict schedule will give the cleanup momentum. Without clear deadlines, volunteers may not take the project as seriously as they should. Making the event schedule available for everyone to see before the day comes will help ensure everyone is on the same page.
Know Where the Trash Will Go
A clean-up project wouldn’t be a true clean-up if there wasn’t trash to deal with. One of the biggest questions you need to answer before the cleanup is what will you do with the things you clean up? Having a trash disposal method in place beforehand is an absolute must. This is where we here at Vine Disposal can help you out. Consider renting a roll-off 10 cubic yard dumpster so you don’t have to worry about getting rid of everything yourself. Having a centralized place for all the trash also helps to streamline the process for your volunteers.
At Vine Disposal, we love to help out communities whenever we can. The beautification of outdoor spaces and communities is an important part of keeping a community together, and we’re proud to be able to be a part of it. When you need a dumpster for your next community cleanup, give Vine Disposal a call, and we’ll be happy to help you out.