Wandsworth schools are being invited to take part in plogging – a great way of keeping fit and active while helping to clean up our environment.
Originating in Sweden it combines picking up litter with jogging or walking to create plogging.
Wandsworth Council recently gave a grant of more than £5000 from its Wandsworth Grant Fund to voluntary group Plogolution to run plogs in schools so that children can play their part in taking pride in our area while enjoying the benefits of a worthwhile workout.
The Wandsworth Grant Fund supports Wandsworth-based community and voluntary groups with funding between £500 and £10,000, for projects or ideas that benefit local people.
“We were delighted to give Plogolution a grant to go towards their work in schools, funding all the equipment towards their plogs for young people, such as litter-pickers, gloves, T-shirts for the kids and also a small rewards scheme,” said Cllr Steffi Sutters, the council’s cabinet member for community services and open spaces.
“As a council we are committed to keeping the borough clean and tidy and plogging is one of the most fun ways I can think of to tackle litter, as well as encouraging the next generation to help save the environment.”
Primary and secondary schools and even nurseries can sign up to plogging. Each school can choose whether to do a plog before, during or after school time.
One of the Plogolution team will start with an assembly to talk about the global problems with littering and plastic pollution before focusing on solutions such as sustainability, reducing single use plastic and then introduce the concept of plogging.
They will then come into the school to help set up their first plog. Before starting there will be a discussion around health and safety issues, including what the children can or can’t pick up, before running a route for them and showing what to do at the end of the plog in counting up the bags of litter.
All the equipment will be provided so that the school can continue plogging on an ongoing basis, and the school is encouraged to upload their statistics at the end of each week to the Plogolution website.
“Plogging is a great way for school kids to get active, as well as helping clean up communities and take pride in the local area,” said Michelle Parkes, Plogolution’s co-founder. “From the schools’ perspective plogging is a great reputational thing for them to be able to show,” said Michelle.
"I’ve done it in my son’s school and I regularly get comments from parents and local residents saying, ‘thank you’ for getting them out and about and for helping to make the streets cleaner and tidier.
But it’s also empowering the children to show that they really can make a difference. It’s incredible how much litter just a small group of children can pick up.”
Supporting such worthwhile initiatives as plogging is all part of the council’s commitment to tackling climate change with an ambition to becoming the greenest borough in inner London.
Wandsworth-based community and voluntary groups, with projects or ideas that benefit the community, are invited to bid for grants from the council’s Wandsworth Grant Fund.
To find out more and getting your school involved in plogging call Michelle on 07747 802 343 or Dermot on 07867 386 293 or visit www.plogolution.com
Photo: Wandsworth Council website