National Nonprofit Launches 2021 Great American Cleanup, Nation’s Spring Cleaning
STAMFORD, Conn. (March 19, 2021) – Keep America Beautiful®, the nation’s leading community improvement nonprofit organization, will launch its 23rd annual Great American Cleanup® (GAC) on Saturday, March 20, the first day of spring. The GAC, which continues through June 20, will engage the Keep America Beautiful network of nearly 700 community-based affiliates and partner organizations in a spring-cleaning movement to beautify and unify communities across America.
Annually, the Keep America Beautiful GAC engages more than 500,000 volunteers in over 15,000 events through activities such as removing litter and debris from roadsides, highways, shorelines, and waterways; planting trees, flowers, and gardens; and cleaning and restoring nature trails, recreation areas, and playgrounds.
The 2021 GAC, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, encourages small-scale, physically distant, or “small pod” collection events adhering to safety protocols. Local traditional cleanup events will also be planned and executed in communities where COVID-19 restrictions permit. To sign up as a volunteer, whether as an individual or with a local Keep America Beautiful affiliate, click here. Registrants will receive a cleanup kit, (while supplies last) containing a litter picker, garbage bags, work gloves, scale, and reflective vest.
“In the face of coronavirus pandemic, it is more important than ever to take action in local communities to create cleaner and safer public spaces, such as beaches, parks, trails, and roadways for everyone to enjoy,” said Helen Lowman, PhD, Keep America Beautiful President and CEO. “Through locally-focused activities and events, the Great American Cleanup offers volunteers, affiliates, and partners the opportunity to make an enormous difference in our local communities.”
2021 Great American Cleanup Event Highlights
Here is a snapshot of Great American Cleanup events taking place this spring:
- North Carolina: Every spring, Girl Scouts Carolinas Peaks to Piedmont hosts its Weekend of Service encouraging its girls, volunteers, and families to do a good deed for someone. This year, the event focuses on environmental stewardship. Keep America Beautiful and Keep North Carolina Beautiful are partners on the event. Details here.
- Keep Pearland Beautiful: Keep Pearland Beautiful, in partnership with the City of Pearland Parks and Recreation Department, Aramco Americas, and Keep America Beautiful, will conduct Plant a Tree Day on March 20. Interested volunteers will help plant 1,000 native trees. Aramco Americas, a GAC sponsor, has provided a grant for the project. Details here.
- Keep the Tennessee River Beautiful: The river-based affiliate, Keep the Tennessee River Beautiful, will conduct its 3rd annual Grand Slam Cleanup series across three states and four cleanup events on March 20, March 21, April 9, and April 10. Details here.
- Keep Panama City Beach: On March 27, Keep Panama City Beach in Florida seeks volunteers to join a cleanup event at all 97 local beach access spots, called the 27 Mile Great American Beach Cleanup. Details here.
- Keep Oklahoma Beautiful: For the past 11 years, Keep Oklahoma Beautiful has had 100% county participation in the state’s Great American Cleanup and seeks to do it again this year. Join the event here.
- Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful – Pick Up Pennsylvania, a program of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, is taking place through May 31. Bags, gloves, and safety vests are provided to registered participants by the PA Departments of Environmental Protection and Transportation and Keep America Beautiful, as supplies last. Details here.
The 2021 GAC also brings new and continued opportunities, including:
- Earth Day: In partnership with EARTHDAY.ORG, Keep America Beautiful encourages volunteers to join its Great American Cleanup in celebration of Earth Day’s Great Global Cleanup in the U.S.
- Focus on MLK thoroughfares: Keep America Beautiful, in partnership with civic and corporate organizations, supports efforts to implement neighborhood building projects along and surrounding Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevards in communities across America.
- Heightened attention to waterways: Keep America Beautiful is selecting communities to place litter collection devices called SeaBins to address marine debris.
“Working in collaboration with affiliates and partners, we are able to achieve collective impact and help restore and build more resilient communities across America,” added Lowman.
The 2021 Great American Cleanup National Sponsors are Altria Group, Aramco Americas, Diageo, The Dow Chemical Company, Igloo, Northrop Grumman, and Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company.
Keep America Beautiful advises that all GAC events adhere to guidelines from federal, state, and local public health officials. For information on cleanups during COVID-19, click here.
About Keep America Beautiful
Keep America Beautiful, the nation’s leading community improvement nonprofit organization, inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. Established in 1953, 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.
The Keep America Beautiful Model for 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 nearly 700 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.