When I tell people I’m a ‘#LitterHero’, they often look at me with a blank expression!
While I’ve always been interested in the environment and very conscious of the impact we have on the world around us, I wasn’t sure how I could make an impact outside of changing my day-to-day habits and behaviours.
That’s when I came across Keep Britain Tidy, one of the main bodies actively helping to reduce the presence of litter across our cities, towns, countryside and beaches.
After attending their organised litter picks in Rugby and Paddington, I realised how passionate I am about taking care of the local community, and I knew I wanted to do more.
Keep Britain Tidy’s work really makes a difference, which is why I became one of their #LitterHero ambassadors.
Now, on a regular basis I’m litter picking and river clear-ups – things I never thought I’d be doing in my career! Fortunately, sustainability and recycling are at the top of the agenda at CCEP, so they’re happy for me to pursue this alongside my other work.
An important part of my #LitterHero ambassador role is about educating people and encouraging them to help create a better environment on their doorstep.
We know that litter attracts litter – it can act as a social cue and imply that littering is acceptable. By reducing the presence of litter and educating younger generations, we can address the cause of the issue and make a real difference to our future.
As well as organising and attending regular litter picks, my goal is to make litter picking a sport in its own right (maybe not quite by this year’s Tokyo Olympics!), and reframe it as something fun, active and empowering.
Being a #LitterHero ambassador has been hugely rewarding for me. I love travelling up and down the country, meeting new people and talking to them about the importance of looking after where they live, as well as showing them how they can make a difference on a larger scale.
What’s more, as we’re seeing an-ever greater focus on the environment and sustainability – which is only going to continue to gain momentum – it’s essential we have an army of people who are committed to creating a cleaner, better society for everyone.
With the Great British Spring Clean fast approaching, I have a busy calendar of litter picks mapped out, which I’ll be doing with the CCEP team and our customers – as well as going back to the Midlands and getting my family involved.
We’ll be doing everything from scaling the beds of local rivers to ‘plogging’ (litter picking and jogging, for those who don’t already know!), so watch this space for more exciting activity to come!