Volunteers hit the streets to spruce up Broadgreen

The Clean and Green event in Broadgreen was organised by Volunteer Swindon and is the latest in a series of similar projects designed to tidy up local areas in the town.

Volunteer Swindon was set up by Swindon Borough Council to help match people to various volunteering projects and aims to engage with residents to help reduce loneliness and isolation.

The small army of 15 volunteers at today’s event spent the morning litter picking, weeding and wiping off graffiti in Broad Street, Ponting Street, Alfred Street, Armstrong Street and Volta Road.

The group collected 16 bags of rubbish, while the Council’s Streetsmart team swept alleyways clean. The Environmental Enforcement team also found evidence of flytipping which will now be investigated.

Any litter collected was also separated so that waste could be recycled, tying in with National Recycle Week.

Keith Duffus, 69, was among the volunteers taking part. A Broadgreen Community Champion, he was delighted to lend both hands to the Clean and Green event.

“I love to help,” said Keith. “It is important to keep areas tidy and they should have these all over the UK. Some areas could certainly do with a tidy up, but although these clean-up events are really good, we need to spread the message that dropping litter is not okay.”

Ahmed Al-Rawi, 47, who is currently living in Old Town, heard about the Clean and Green day through the Harbour Project. He said: “I have been volunteering with the Harbour Project and it was through them that I heard about this event. I have come from Iraq and this is my new home.

“This gives me an opportunity to give something back to the community and make Swindon beautiful.”

Twenty-four-year-old Simon Piff joined Volunteer Swindon to build up his confidence. “I have anxiety problems so this is really good for me,” he explained. “It is good to come out and take part in such a worthwhile event which helps the local community.”

Tracy Scott, a Community Facilitator for the Council’s Locality projects, said: “We have been holding these events every month since February and today’s clean-up was brilliant.

“It was great to see so many people involved and taking pride in this community. I must also thank the Council departments that took part because they provided great support to the volunteers on the day and also dealt with issues that were impacting on the community such as the flytipping.”

Volunteer Swindon’s next Clean and Green day will be held at Clive Parade and Headlands Grove on Wednesday, 12 October. For more details contact Tracy Scott on 01793 466239 or email: volunteer@swindon.gov.uk

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