Start planning your Great Global Cleanup today!

Follow our simple guide to make the most out of your cleanup. If you need any help, reach out to us at [email protected].

  • Choose a public location: a park, a river, or a similar community site that is ideally accessible by public transportation or bicycle.
  • Select a date.
    • TIP: Earth Day is on April 22nd and World Cleanup Day is on the Third Saturday in September)
  • Select a Time: Depending on where you are, choose a time that allows for plenty of daylight and comfortable temperatures for volunteers. Most cleanups happen between 9:00am and 11:00am.

  • Decide who will be organizing the cleanup. Whether it is your friends, your organization, or just you!
  • Invite members from local government, civic organizations, clubs, homeowner associations, churches and media to serve on a cleanup planning committee. Having a diverse coalition can help the event run well. 
  • Appoint site captains who will manage the event and designate roles to assure cleanup goes smoothly.

  • Register your cleanup so it appears on the Great Global Cleanup Map and is connected to our global network of volunteers
  • Advertise your cleanup to your organization, family, friends, and/or community members
    • TIP: people from different organizations and associations can help turn out volunteers and bridge community members through the cleanup; i.e.: A reverend asking their ministry)
  • Online: Use Facebook or Eventbrite to create the event and manage volunteer sign up, and share event information.
  • Offline: Put up posters around the neighborhood, on the elevator in your apartment building, on the bulletin board in your building, etc. Get creative!

  • Ask for donations of trash bags, refreshments, and equipment.
    • TIP: Local hardware stores are usually willing to donate these resources
  • Coordinate with local waste management through a short phone call to ensure everything is being disposed of in accordance with rules and regulations.
  • Be sure that contributors get credit for their donations in cleanup promotions
  • Gather supplies
    • Important Items To Have:
      • Trash Bags or Buckets
      • Trash Grabbers 
      • First Aid Kit 
      • Gloves and Hand Sanitizer 
      • Water/ Snacks
      • Table and chairs (we recommend two tables, one 6’ and the other 4’)
      • Event Signage
      • Download and print this QR code to have the attendees sign the Global Plastic Treaty petition

  • Closer to the date, check the weather and plan to dress appropriately. Wear something you don’t mind getting dirty! 
  • Send a reminder the night before or day of to all participants and key individuals that you hope to attend. 
  • Invite local media outlets to cover the event and spread awareness 
  • As a leader, arrive to the event early to set up before volunteers arrive

  • Safety is key. Two people make a team! Wear gloves, and closed toe shoes. Bring a hat, sunscreen & reusable water bottle
  • Keep the environment safe
    • Vegetation is sensitive and wildlife is best kept wild
  • What to remove:
    • Trash and Litter (Anything created by humans)
    • Recyclables
  • What to leave:
    • Nature
    • Homeless Encampments
    • Dead Animals
    • Syringes, needles, and other hazardous materials.

  • Find a location to properly dispose of all of the waste you will clean up! 
  • Sort the waste into trash, recyclables, and hazardous waste.
    • If you are unsure of where to dispose of any of this waste contact your local municipality's waste department for further instruction

  • Help us track trash and have your cleanup be recorded on our public map by reporting your cleanup
  • Take pictures before and after your collection and share to twitter and instagram. Use handles #GreatGlobalCleanup, #TrashTag, and #Plogging. EARTHDAY.ORG will be re-posting content to our social media
  • Post your event on social media. Tag us at @thegreatglobalcleanup on Instagram and TikTok.
  • Share your images with local newspapers, magazines, and EARTHDAY.ORG
  • Write thank you emails to any cooperating government officials, businesses, and organizations.

A partnership with The Great Global Cleanup means you will be involved year round in the work our organization does. You will have a platform when Earth Day comes around each April.

This will mean a partnership with our activities for World Cleanup Day and engagement with partners such as Let’s Do It World and National CleanUp Day. We are forming a coalition of like minded organizations and individuals committed to achieving our mutual goals of protecting our environment through community outreach and networking. You will also have access to toolkits, cleanup competitions, participation in social media campaigns, access to tailor made toolkits, and be able to participate in webinars and Earth Day Live sessions. 

After Your Cleanup:

  1. Share Your Cleanup

    By sharing your cleanup, you can help grow the global cleanup movement through illustrating your activism on the map. Your work will add to the amount of waste collected worldwide and encourage others to do the same.

  2. Check Out the Map!

    You have access to the digital global map that showcases your cleanups and allows you to view cleanups globally.

  3. Sign the call for a global plastics treaty

    Make sure you and all of your participants sign the call for a global plastics treaty to end plastic pollution once and for all!