STAMFORD, Conn., March 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Keep America Beautiful, the nation's leading nonprofit that brings people together to build vibrant communities, today announced its first-ever annual social mission goals. These goals reflect the nonprofit's actions, which create communities that are socially connected, environmentally healthy and economically sound.
In addition, the national nonprofit launched its new, interactive Social Volunteer Hub that highlights volunteers' experiences during its flagship program, Great American Cleanup. Keep America Beautiful (KAB), which has been engaging people to take greater responsibility for improving their community's environment for 60 years, will kick off the Great American Cleanup with its social mission goals and social volunteer hub at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, this weekend.
"Each and every day, we are singularly focused on transforming public spaces into beautiful places in communities across the country," said Matt McKenna, KAB president and chief executive officer. "Whether the place is a neighborhood park, a river shoreline or a vacant lot, public places provide a neutral space in which people can come together, share ideas and establish meaningful relationships. When provided with the right tools and resources, we've found that people tend to take better care of these places, resulting in even greater community benefits."
Creating a Digital Cleanup Community
The Great American Cleanup is the nation's largest community improvement program that harnesses the power of millions of volunteers to build and sustain vibrant communities. This year, the 27-year-old program will be reignited by the launch of KAB's new Social Volunteer Hub (kabcleanup.org) at SXSW. This hub brings the Great American Cleanup story to life, allowing volunteers to share their cleanup experiences in real time through the power of social media.
By using the #KeepAmericaBeautiful hashtag, volunteers nationwide connect through the social hub as it aggregates volunteers' Tweets, Instagram photos, Facebook posts and Foursquare check-ins in one centralized location. With the launch of the social volunteer hub at SXSW, Keep America Beautiful will engage volunteers with technology and inspire the next generation of environmental stewards to become more involved in their local community's volunteer activities.
2013 Vibrant Communities Impact Goals
For the first time ever, KAB announced its 2013 Vibrant Communities Impact Goals that reflect the nonprofit's actions in more than 20,000 communities across the country. From planting a tree on a vacant lot to increase adjacent property values to building edible community gardens that produce fresh fruits and vegetables for better nutrition, the national nonprofit's actions result in both social and economic impact.
This year's goals include:
- Clean and restore public places for safer, cleaner communities
- 200,000 public acres and sites
- 100,000 miles of roads and highways
- 10,000 miles of rivers, lakes and shorelines
- Place 5,000 recycling bins in public spaces to increase on-the-go recycling
- Plant trees and gardens to enhance communities' green infrastructure
- Plant and/or sustain 150,000 trees
- Plant and/or sustain 750 community edible gardens
- Plant and/or sustain 3,000 gardens and green spaces
- Construct and restore 5,000 playgrounds to encourage physical activity
- Educate 250,000 children to become the next generation of environmental stewards
Keep America Beautiful at SXSW
KAB is leveraging the innovative spirit of SXSW to introduce its annual impact goals and new digital platform to a progressive audience who utilizes social media as a means to connect in social mission.
On Saturday, March 9, the nonprofit will introduce its new brand platform at a luncheon during Tech Cocktail's SXSW Startup Celebration at the Stage on Sixth. KAB CEO Matt McKenna will be on site to share the nonprofit's new Vibrant Communities Impact Goals, introduce the social volunteer hub and encourage the festival's attendees to volunteer to improve their community's environment.
KAB is also teaming up with The GLAD Products Company to be the waste diversion partner of SouthBites, a gourmet food truck destination at the festival curated by Austin Chef and Top Chef season nine winner, Paul Qui. From March 8 through March 12, SouthBites attendees will learn about waste diversion with teams from KAB and Glad on deck to provide information on recycling and composting. In addition, artist Jason Mecier will be on site creating a mural of America from recycled materials collected at the SouthBites venue.
SXSW attendees and Austin residents have the opportunity to join a volunteer cleanup event driven by local affiliate Keep Austin Beautiful at 9 am, Saturday, March 9. Volunteers will bring KAB's mission to life by removing litter and debris as well as recycling content from a heavily trafficked area on the main thoroughfare of the festival. The action will all be captured on the new social volunteer hub.
The events at SXSW are just the kickoff of a series of community improvement events across the country that create clean, beautiful places, reduce waste and increase recycling efforts in local communities. Volunteers can view opportunities in their communities by visiting kabcleanup.org. The Great American Cleanup activities spike through May in communities across the country but occur year-round.
The national sponsors of the 2013 Great American Cleanup to date are: The Dow Chemical Company; The Glad Products Company; LG Electronics U.S.A., Inc.; Nestle® Pure Life® Purified Water; PepsiCo's Pepsi-Cola and Gatorade companies; Solo Cup Company; Troy-Bilt® Lawn and Garden Equipment; Waste Management, WM Recycle Service; and Wrigley.
About Keep America Beautiful
Keep America Beautiful is the nation's leading nonprofit that brings people together to build and sustain vibrant communities. With a strong national network of 1,200 affiliate and partners including state recycling organizations, the national nonprofit works with millions of volunteers who take action in their communities. Keep America Beautiful offers solutions that create clean, beautiful public places, reduce waste and increase recycling, inspire generations of environmental stewards and generate positive impact on local economies. Through our programs and public-private partnerships, we engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community's environment. For more information, visit kab.org.
About The GLAD Products Company
The GLAD Products Company is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Clorox Company. The Clorox Company is a leading multinational manufacturer and marketer of consumer and professional products with approximately 8,400 employees and fiscal year 2012 revenues of $5.5 billion. Clorox markets some of the most trusted and recognized brand names, including its namesake bleach and cleaning products, Clorox Healthcare™, HealthLink®, Aplicare® and Dispatch® products, Green Works® naturally derived home care products, Pine-Sol® cleaners, Poett® home care products, Fresh Step® cat litter, Glad® bags, wraps and containers, Kingsford® charcoal, Hidden Valley® and KC Masterpiece® dressings and sauces, Brita® water-filtration products, and Burt's Bees® and gud® natural personal care products. Nearly 90 percent of the company's brands hold the No. 1 or No. 2 market share positions in their categories. Clorox's commitment to corporate responsibility includes making a positive difference in its communities. In fiscal year 2012, The Clorox Company Foundation awarded $3.5 million in cash grants, and Clorox made product donations valued at $15 million. For more information, visit TheCloroxCompany.com.
About South by Southwest
SXSW offers a unique convergence of original music, independent films and emerging technologies. Fostering creative and professional growth alike, SXSW is a launching pad for new creative content. For more information, visit http://www.sxsw.com.
About Tech Cocktail
Tech Cocktail is a media company and events organization for startups, entrepreneurs, and technology enthusiasts. Since 2006, its goal has been to amplify local tech communities and give entrepreneurs a place to get informed, get connected, and get inspired. Tech Cocktail dedicates itself to covering news, how-to's, up-and-coming startups, and industry trends online, and hosting events in over 20 cities in the US and abroad.
SOURCE Keep America Beautiful