STAMFORD, Conn., March 6, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 20th anniversary of Keep America Beautiful's Great American Cleanup, the nation's largest community improvement program, officially kicks off on the first day of spring – Tuesday, March 20 – with thousands of cleaning, greening and beautification events scheduled across America through the spring, summer and fall. Many Keep America Beautiful affiliates in warmer regions have already started their Great American Cleanup campaigns.
With more than 60,000 events held in tens of thousands of communities nationwide, Keep America Beautiful's Great American Cleanup annually engages more than 5 million volunteers and participants to create a positive and lasting impact across the country. Keep America Beautiful's more than 600 state and community-based affiliates and other partnering organizations lead hands-on volunteer events and education programs that help to renew public parks, trails and recreation areas; clean, enhance and protect shorelines, beaches and waterways; remove litter and debris from roadways, storm drains and public spaces; reduce waste and improve recycling; and plant trees, flowers and community gardens.
"Keep America Beautiful is excited to kick off the 20th anniversary of the Great American Cleanup with the help of our affiliates and partners, who work hard to create meaningful and lasting change in their local communities," said Keep America Beautiful President and CEO Helen Lowman. "The Great American Cleanup has been so successful over its 20-year history because local government, businesses, civic organizations and dedicated volunteers all work together to help transform public spaces into beautiful places and to make sure every neighborhood is a clean, green and beautiful place to live and thrive in."
The 2018 Great American Cleanup social theme – #cleanYOURblock – is a call-to-action to engage more volunteers and participants in public space cleanup, beautification and recycling events conducted by Keep America Beautiful affiliates nationwide. Once an individual becomes a Great American Cleanup volunteer with their local Keep America Beautiful affiliate or partner, the national nonprofit's goal is that they will be inspired to take that experience home to organize similar, smaller-scale events in their own neighborhood – right on their own block – with neighbors, family and friends.
Volunteers are invited to participate in a local Great American Cleanup event – or conduct their own – and then celebrate the hard work afterward … creating a national #cleanYOURblock Party! Take the first step to a more beautiful future by creating your own #cleanYOURblock fundraising team or by signing up for a Great American Cleanup event near you and joining a local team. Additional resources can be found here.
"Our goal is to spread the word on the value of beautifying communities, educate and encourage volunteers to build a sense of community pride and stewardship, and offer experiences that help change behaviors in communities nationwide, block by block. Working together, we can help foster communities that are environmentally and economically healthier, while strengthening the critical connection between people and places," added Lowman.
2018 Great American Cleanup Event Highlights
Here is a snapshot of Great American Cleanup events taking place this spring:
- Great American Cleanup of PA: Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful volunteer groups that register events can get free cleanup supplies such as bags, gloves and vests donated by PennDOT, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and Keep America Beautiful. Additionally, during the Pick It Up PA Days, which takes place from April 7-30 and is sponsored by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Pennsylvania Waste Industries Association, and participating landfills, registered events have access to reduced or free disposal. Details here.
- Keep Austin Beautiful Day: Each April, Keep Austin Beautiful hosts Clean Sweep, a county-wide service day spanning 130+ sites in 31 zip codes throughout Austin and Travis County. Over the years, the event has become much more than a cleanup. To recognize the breadth of volunteer activity that will be taking place around Austin on Saturday, April 14, the day has been formally renamed Keep Austin Beautiful Day! Registration details here.
- Brightside & Passport Health Plan Spring Community-Wide Cleanup: The Brightside cleanup in Louisville, Kentucky, also takes place on April 14. Brightside welcomes groups of all sizes. Supply pick up takes place on Sunday, April 8, at the Iroquois Park Amphitheater. Brightside is proud to be holding our Cleanup with the Give A Day - Mayor's Week of Service for the fifth year. Details here.
- Spend Earth Day with I Love A Clean San Diego at Creek to Bay: Join ILACSD on Saturday, April 21, as its volunteers beautify 100 sites in San Diego County during the 16th Annual Creek to Bay Cleanup. Last year, a record-breaking 6,588 volunteers came out to 112 sites and successfully removed nearly 195,000 pounds of litter and debris. Registration details here.
- Great Massachusetts Cleanup: This year, Keep Massachusetts Beautiful is encouraging Cleanup Captains to designate Saturday, April 28, for their Great Massachusetts Cleanup events. Every spring, volunteers in communities across the state organize litter cleanups, park maintenance projects, tree planting, and other community service events as part of the Great Massachusetts Cleanup. More information here.
Every year, with the support of Keep America Beautiful affiliates, volunteers, corporate partners, social and civic service organizations, municipalities and government officials, Keep America Beautiful, on average:
- Cleans, improves and beautifies more than 100,000 miles of roads, parks, shorelines and waterways;
- Plants hundreds of thousands of trees, plants and community gardens;
- Collects tens of millions of pounds of litter and debris for proper disposal;
- Collects hundreds of millions of pounds of items for recycling or reusing;
- Educates and activates millions of youth (K-12 and College) to inspire the next generation of community and environmental stewards; and
- Delivers more than $200 million in measurable economic benefits to communities across the country.
National sponsors of the 2018 Great American Cleanup include Altria, Dow, The Glad Products Company, Lowe's, McDonald's and Niagara Bottling.
About Keep America Beautiful
Keep America Beautiful, the nation's iconic community improvement nonprofit organization, inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. Celebrating its 65th Anniversary in 2018, Keep America Beautiful strives to End Littering, Improve Recycling and Beautify America's Communities. We believe everyone has a right to live in a clean, green and beautiful community, and shares a responsibility to contribute to that vision.
Behavior change – steeped in education, research and behavioral science – is the cornerstone of Keep America Beautiful. We empower generations of community and environmental stewards with volunteer programs, hands-on experiences, educational curricula, practical advice and other resources. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 600 Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the collaborative support of corporate partners, social and civic service organizations, academia, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals. Join us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Donate and take action at kab.org.
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SOURCE Keep America Beautiful