Council kick starts Bin it for Good charity project in Birmingham

A new anti-litter project has been launched in Birmingham city centre to encourage cleaner streets and support local charities and good causes.

The city council has joined forces with environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, The Wrigley Company and the Retail Birmingham Business Improvement District in a bid to keep the city centre as clean as possible through the ‘Bin it for Good’ project.

Seven areas across England including Birmingham are taking part in the three month project, where litter bins will be transformed into charity collection pots, with Retail Birmingham’s partner charity LoveBrum set to benefit from the scheme.

The way in which the project works is simple – the more litter that goes into 48 bins across the city centre and the less on the ground, the more money the charity will receive.

In total. £1,300 will be up for grabs to LoveBrum, with the final total to be awarded on a sliding scale basis depending on the percentage increase in rubbish collected from the Bin it for Good branded bins.

A three-month pilot took place last year in Rayleigh, Essex, which saw a reduction in litter of over 42 per cent.

Cllr Lisa Trickett, Cabinet Member for Sustainability at Birmingham City Council, said: “We spend £13million on street cleansing across Birmingham every year – and some of that could be used on other front-line services if we all showed we love where we live by disposing of our litter in a responsible way.

“That is exactly why we are excited to be taking part in the Bin it for Good project. Three local good causes will benefit from the responsible behaviour of citizens, and I hope this persuades some people who might be tempted to throw a sweet wrapper or drinks can on the floor to think twice.

“We are willing to look at schemes that work elsewhere if they help make Birmingham cleaner and greener. This has been a success in Essex and there is no reason it cannot be embraced here too.

Jonathan Cheetham, chair of Retail Birmingham, comments: “2015 is a significant year for Birmingham with all eyes on the revolutionary changes happening to our retail landscape.

“Combine this with playing host to a number of key regional and national events, Birmingham will continue to see even greater visitor numbers and footfall.

“It’s vital therefore that we keep our streets cleaner than ever and this initiative will not only help us achieve that goal but at the same time we are pleased to be working with LoveBrum to help raise money for good causes within the city.”

Anyone who wants to do their bit by putting rubbish into bins in the Retail Birmingham Business Improvement District are being asked to spread the word on social media using the hashtags #tidybrum and #BinItForGood

Rich McIlwain, Director of Operations at Keep Britain Tidy, added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with The Wrigley Company and our local authority partners on the Bin it for Good project.

“The charity bins initiative aims to encourage people to do the right thing with their rubbish and, at the same time, supports local charities. The results from the pilot in Essex last year were fantastic, with a reduction in litter of more than 40 per cent and several charities getting donations as a result.”

Alex West, Wrigley’s Senior Manager, Corporate Affairs – UK & Ireland, said: “At Wrigley, we are always looking for innovative ways to change behaviour and reduce levels of litter.

“We were thrilled at the success of the original Bin It For Good pilot and look forward to seeing the impact that linking binning litter to helping local charities can have in other areas of the country.”