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By Willa dicostanzo, Waste Diversion Coordinator, City of Lincoln

While being outside during these warm months you may start to notice more litter. Instead of pointing out the litter and doing nothing about it, grab a bag and Littercize!

My children, like most children, want a toy every time we visit a store (more waste). Instead of giving in and purchasing that toy, we are using Littercize as a teaching tool. Aluminum cans have a value. If we collect enough cans, they can use the money to purchase their desired toy.   

So, we get to work. With gloves on, I stand guard in my high visibility vest, and we grab our reusable bags, one for litter and one for aluminum cans. We walk, sort, listen, and look to ensure our safety while picking up litter. Breathing in the fresh air, we discuss the importance of picking up litter to help the animals and plants that live on
our planet.   

After we have collected a few large bags of aluminum cans, we’ll take a trip to the local recycling buy-back center for the cash reward. And then, we will discuss: should we save the money, donate it to a good cause, or buy the highly sought-after toy? Maybe, the same toy could be purchased used, thus saving money and reducing waste. Ultimately the decision is theirs. This exercise, no pun intended, was not about making money, it was an opportunity to instill hard work and patience into my children while teaching them to take care of the planet we call home.

For more information about litter reduction or to borrow litter pick-up supplies, search for Keep Lincoln and Lancaster County Beautiful, or reach them by email at [email protected], and by phone at 402-441-8035

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