Join and Keep New Brunswick Clean in Spring Season

The City of New Brunswick is seeking help from community residents to keep its streets clean. An orientation meeting for Clean City Block Captain program was held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 23 at the Hub Teen Center, 411 Joyce Kilmer Avenue.

The New Brunswick Clean City Block Captains program utilizes the volunteer efforts of residents to promote litter cleanups and community awareness of proper litter disposal. “These efforts make a big difference in the cleanliness of our City,” New Brunswick public information officer, Jennifer Bradshaw said, “This grassroots effort keeps litter off the streets and builds community bonds block by block.”

Volunteers are encouraged to collect litter in their neighborhoods as well as distribute information materials to their neighbors, promoting cleanups and proper litter and recycling disposal. Bags, gloves, educational materials in both English and Spanish are provided by the City. All these tools are supported by program coordinator Donna Caputo, who also serves as Recycling Coordinator for the City of New Brunswick.

“They are an active and important part of our team that works to spread awareness and education about maintaining a clean and green community.” Bradshaw said.

All residents are encouraged to become Clean City Block Captains. Throughout the year, they are responsible for conducting mini-cleanups on their neighborhood block. Volunteers are also tasked with educating their neighbors about the significance of keeping their neighborhood clean. “It’s all about organizing your own neighborhood litter cleanup and motivating others,” Bradshaw said.

The Clean City Block Captains program started in 2010. It has been growing and was recognized with the Creativity and Innovation Award by Sustainable Jersey in November, 2015. Block Captains are open to sign up at any time. “We had 37 residents registered as Block Captains in 2016, and I’m hoping to recruit more people this year.” Bradshaw said. Anyone that is interested in this program or wishes to receive more information is encouraged to call (732) 745-5245.

The Clean City Block Captain program meets twice a year. Active Block Captains receive awards, certificates, and clean-up tools to aid in their clean-up process. They will be acknowledged for their participation and dedication to the New Brunswick community.

Next month will mark their annual Urban Cleanup Week from April 17-23, in which different events will be held on each day, promoting litter cleanup, positive recycling habits and environmentally-friendly behavior. All residents are encouraged to be a part of it, not only Block Captains. Students from elementary school will particularly enjoy “School Kids Sweep-Up Day”, which consists of litter cleanups, awards and a themed celebration for them.