As part of this year’s Great British Spring Clean, which took place between 28 May and 13 June, members of the Plaistow branch of the Victory Youth Group helped out with a litter pick at the New City Road and New City Green on Saturday 5 June.
The volunteers tackled residential streets and public play areas, in cooperation with Newham council, collecting anything from bottles to food waste and disposing of 21 bags of rubbish. The council plans to transform the area into a location for events, educational engagements and other community functions, and the young people’s work revealed what a pleasant, litter-free space it can be.
The 22 VYG volunteers were briefed by Andrew De Heer, Newham’s community neighbourhood senior officer, who talked about the council’s ambition for the area and guided them through the neighbourhood, providing the necessary safety equipment, COVID-compliant materials and tools. In acknowledging that other youths had been using the area for negative activities including drugs, Andrew was particularly pleased to have young people giving back to the community, a rarity in his experience.
One of the volunteers, Omolade Ojo said: “It was good fun, it’s a good initiative because if we do it every week it could encourage others to come and litter pick as well”. Local residents were certainly appreciative as a number of them turned out to applaud the good work.
David O’Regan, came down from a tower block overlooking the areas that were being cleaned up to find out what was happening and commented: “I’m glad young people are being productive. This area has always had problems and hopefully this effort isn’t [going to be] wasted and good things can start happening”.
The Great British Spring Clean is an initiative run by the charity Keep Britain Tidy. In participating, the VYG aimed to take action for a greener Britain and show some love to outdoor spaces, which have become extra important for all over the past year.
Notes to editors
VYG is the youth arm of the UCKG HelpCentre, and works to help young people aged 14 to 25 to develop their full potential. VYG started in the UK in 1996 and has been growing steadily ever since. Over 1,300 young people attend VYG meetings every week, sharing sessions that include practical teaching, fun and spiritual development.
UCKG is a Christian church and registered charity that offers a range of practical support activities alongside spiritual support and comfort and welcomes all-comers. It reached the UK in 1995 and has gone from strength to strength, providing support and spreading the Christian faith. There are UCKG HelpCentre branches in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
For further information please contact the UCKG HelpCentre Press Officer via e-mail on email@example.com or direct line 020 7686 6033.