On a beautiful spring day, a group of IXLers met outside a grocery store in Cary, North Carolina. They didn’t show up to go shopping—they were there to join forces with 150 other community volunteers and help out with Cary’s Spring Litter Sweep!
The Spring Litter Sweep is an annual event coordinated by Spruce, a Cary volunteer program devoted to waste reduction, beautification, and environmental service projects in the community. This year, volunteers in the Spring Litter Sweep collected litter in seven designated locations throughout Cary.
The Spring Litter Sweep gives members of the community the opportunity to take ownership of their town’s upkeep. But picking up litter is about more than just keeping Cary beautiful. All of the watersheds in Cary feed into rivers that eventually pour into the Atlantic Ocean. This means that litter in Cary has the potential to impact not only the local ecosystem, but also marine life.
After getting briefed on the goals of the project, volunteers were given orange safety vests, work gloves, trash bags, and grabbing tools for picking up the litter. IXLers then headed out to their assigned area and spent the next two hours collecting plastic bags, old bottles, styrofoam cups, cardboard boxes, takeout containers, candy bar wrappers, and any other garbage they spotted. In the end, IXLers filled up two large trash bags of litter, contributing to the over 3,000 pounds of litter collected during the Spring Litter Sweep.
“I had a great time at the Cary Spring Litter Sweep!” said Erica Fried, an IXL teacher memberships specialist. “It’s awesome to know that we made a difference in our community.”
Founded in 2009, Spruce has run over 4,000 volunteer projects and coordinated over 25,000 volunteers. For more information about the Spruce program and how you can get involved with their efforts, click here.
—Amanda Simays, Curriculum Designer