By Tamas Mondovics
Tampa Bay area residents are invited to take part in the annual Hillsborough River and Coastal Cleanup, joining the effort to beautify sites along the Hillsborough and Alafia Rivers and other waterways.
Hosted each year by Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful (KTBB), the campaign is scheduled to be held on Saturday, September 20 at 75 locations across Hillsborough County and according to KTBB officials, it is again promising similar results as last year’s event.
“We had over 4,000 volunteers participate in the cleanup last year along the Hillsborough River, Alafia River and other waterways, and we have removed well over 60,500 lbs. of litter and debris from throughout Hillsborough County,” said KTBB spokesperson Pat DePlasco. “This is one of our biggest events of the year and we are relying on our volunteer support. We love our volunteers as they are the backbone of our organization. It is only with their help that we can enjoy the environmental health of our community.”
The campaign’s activities includes litter removal, recycling, park cleanup, painting and renewal programs, clothing collections, graffiti removal, beautification and refurbishing projects, river, lake and seashore cleanups.
Again this year KTBB is expecting thousands to come out and help with the cleanup effort joining a much bigger group of volunteers numbering close to 2.5 million in over 15,000 communities across the country, all working to make their neighborhoods a more beautiful places in to live.
During the event data is collected, including the number and type of littered items, the overall tonnage removed and the amount of recyclable material diverted from each site.
“Data is shared with the International Coastal Cleanup, Keep America Beautiful, as well as local officials to help provide a local and global perspective,” DePlasco said.
The information is then used to determine future projects and create an awareness of the needs within the community.
As part of the International Coastal Cleanup, data is shared with Keep America Beautiful, Ocean Conservancy, as well as local officials to help provide a local and global perspective.
To find a project location nearby visit, keeptampabaybeautiful.org/coastal-cleanup.shtml. For additional information or to organize a new location, call 221-8733, or visit www.KeepTampaBayBeautiful.org.