Anti-litter efforts are nothing new, but Keep Philadelphia Beautiful
(KPB) Executive Director Michelle Feldman is hoping to take them to the next level in 2016 by convening the city’s most comprehensive forum on littering to date.
KPB is involved in the community outreach and educational aspects of neighborhood greening, sustainability and beautification, working with motivated local groups through micro-grants, workshops and classes.
Last October, Feldman helped organize the initial session of a new consortium: KPB is partnering with the Commerce Department
, the Streets Department
, the Philadelphia Association of CDCs
and the Philly chapter of the Local Initiative Support Coalition
"Heads of neighborhood-based organizations have meetings together all the time," explains Feldman, but they’ve never focused specifically on issues of litter. The long-term coalition aims to share resources, challenges and best practices while also looking to the future for a concrete joint project spearheaded by KPB.
"I want to form an advisory committee of folks who are on the ground in different neighborhoods around the city," she says. "I want to hear, what are the challenges in [for example] West Philly versus North Philly…and what are the ways that Keep Philadelphia Beautiful at a city-wide level can help to address those challenges."
The first meetings -- they aren’t branded yet, but Feldman is calling them "litter convenings" -- are already getting a big response. The October session at the Municipal Services Building (MSB) drew about thirty people. An invitation to the next meeting on Wednesday, January 20 (10 a.m. - 12 p.m. in MSB’s 16th floor Innovation Lab
) quickly garnered a raft of RSVPs.
The January 20 agenda includes small group work on best practices in youth and business owner engagement, preventing illegal dumping, and examining existing data/metrics on the issue. All attendees will have the chance to see and comment on the top concepts from each breakout group.
"It’s going to dovetail nicely with a new administration and their focus on littering," enthuses Feldman.
Community stakeholders interesting in attending should RSVP to email@example.com
Writer: Alaina Mabaso
Source: Michelle Feldman, Keep Philadelphia Beautiful