Cleanup efforts, recycling events continue to benefit community

By Paul Ploumis

The mission of Keep America Beautiful is “to inspire and educate people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community.”

In 2021, we fulfilled our mission by hosting recycling events, citywide and group cleanup events through our Adopt-A-Spot program and attending community events.

During 2021 we had 907 volunteers and staff throughout Nash and Edgecombe counties work a total of 2,037 hours. These volunteers and staff collected 21,570 pounds of litter and debris, cleaned and improved over 12 miles of rivers, cleaned and improved 11,000 acres of parks, public lands, playgrounds and trails and planted over 7,000 plants, shrubs, flowers and bulbs.

 This truly shows the love our residents and staff have for their communities.

We held three recycling events in 2021, Edgecombe County Recycles Day, Nash County Recycles Day and America Recycles Day. During these events, we recycled 22,895 pounds of paper, 10,600 pounds of electronics. We properly disposed of 12,000 pounds of paint and 3,437 pounds of other household hazardous waste.

These events are always a huge success, and we are planning on having them again in 2022. The dates will be March 5 for Nash County Recycles Day at the Nash County Courthouse parking lot in Nashville, April 23 for Edgecombe County Recycles Day at the Edgecombe County Administrative building parking lot in Tarboro and Nov. 12 for America Recycles Day in the JCPenney parking lot at Golden East Crossing mall.

All events are held from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. and we accept documents/paper for shredding — Shred It will be on-site — prescription medications, electronics, cardboard and fluorescent light bulbs. Household hazardous waste will be accepted at our America Recycles Event only.

New for 2022, we have partnered with our local Habitat for Humanity Restore and they will be on-site at all three events to collect any usable items. Items may include furniture, knick-knacks, doors, windows, electronics, bikes, exercise equipment, etc.

These events are made possible by the City of Rocky Mount, Nash County, Edgecombe County, Cummins Rocky Mount Engine Plant, Golden East Crossing mall, Rocky Mount Police Department, Nash County Sherriff’s Office, Edgecombe County Sherriff’s office, Gloria Moseley with Edgecombe County Solid Waste, Ben Barnes with Nash County Solid Waste, KAB board members, the Rocky Mount city staff and contributions from event participants.

We want to encourage everyone to join our Adopt-A-Spot team. We make it simple. You get a group of people together — church group, civic club, neighborhood group, business, sorority, fraternity, etc. — and pick a street that your group would like to adopt. You fill out a short application and you are done.

We provide you with everything you need: Bags, trash grabbers and safety vests. After your fourth clean-up, we put a sign on your adopted street letting everyone know that your group is taking a stand in the fight against litter. There is no charge associated with this and it is a great way to show pride in your community.

If you are interested in volunteering with Keep America Beautiful of Nash and Edgecombe Counties, contact me at 252-467-4960 or via e-mail stephanie.collins@rockymountnc.gov.