Whose responsibility is litter?
As Durham prepares to celebrate Earth Day with a festival April 27, many wonder how they can help the local environment. Some pick up litter every day -- seeing it, they pick it up, no matter who dropped it or who may be “supposed” to pick it up.
The Exchange Club of Durham, a local chapter of the national service club, has taken litter prevention one step further. The group has committed to collect litter along a city street once each month through the Keep Durham Beautiful Adopt-a-Street program. Their designated route is West Club Boulevard between Broad Street and Hillandale Road.
“We could not think of a better opportunity that would allow us to bond more with each other as we try to assist a community to be even more attractive,” said Rosalind Coleman, president of the Exchange Club of Durham. “We usually have six to ten volunteers at each event and the residents probably wonder why we are usually laughing and having so much fun collecting trash. Several residents have thanked us for our efforts in the cleanups.”
Keep Durham Beautiful administers the Adopt-a-Street Program for city-maintained roads. The street length must be a minimum of one mile and required frequency of cleanup is once a month.
N.C. Department of Transportation administers the Adopt-a-Highway program for state-maintained roads. The street length must be a minimum of two miles and required frequency of cleanup is four times a year.
Both programs provide for a sign recognizing the group performing the volunteer service. Participants receive trash bags, gloves and vests as needed. Keep Durham Beautiful also loans litter grabbers for regular and one-time litter collection activities.
The Exchange Club of Durham has completed three cleanups since adopting West Club Boulevard, the minimum number required before a sign is placed to recognize the group’s commitment. As a group of individuals committed to service, they plan to continue this event each month as one of their many ways of giving back to the Durham community.
Tania Dautlick is executive director of Keep Durham Beautiful, a non-profit affiliate of Keep America Beautiful. KDB works in collaboration with Durham city and county to engage and inspire individuals to take greater responsibility for their community environment. Focus areas include litter prevention, beautification, recycling and waste reduction. To learn about volunteer opportunities, visit www.keepdurhambeautiful.org or call 919-354-2729. Be sure to like us at www.facebook.com/KeepDurhamBeautiful or follow us at www.twitter.com/DurhamBeautiful.