How to Organize a Neighborhood Cleanup

Interested in making an impact in your neighborhood? Are you tired of looking at the trash in the lot next door? Do you have a desire to get to know your neighbors a little more and get them excited about the neighborhood? A great way to get that lot cleared up and get neighbors together is to organize a neighborhood cleanup. All it takes is a little investigation, planning, communication, elbow grease and a group of willing neighbors.

Set Up a Meeting

Pick a time, date and location for a preliminary meeting and the cleanup. Volunteers are generally more available on Saturdays. Communicate with your block club and get your team together.

Contact Your District Manager

Contact your neighborhood district manager to discuss plans for vacant lots and invite him or her to the planning meeting. Request that he or she communicates with the Department of Public Works as they are responsible for collection of refuse and bulk waste collection. If you let them know what you’re planning, they’ll be better able to help you with advice and assistance.

Post Flyers and Send Invites

A few days prior to the event, post flyers around your neighborhood. Send out a Facebook invite to your friends and tell your community members, friends and family to join you for a planning meeting. Also be sure to share the date of the main event.

Reach Out to Volunteers

Reach out to people who live around the area you’ve targeted for cleaning. They will probably be the most interested in getting rid of the trash and would make a strong first line of recruits. Try communicating with people when they’re coming home from work, before or after worship or when they’re out in the neighborhood. Then, move out to surrounding homes, blocks, churches and businesses. Don’t forget the younger members of your community; their enthusiasm and energy can make your project a greater success and motivate others to get involved.

Have a Meeting to Discuss Details

Find a meeting space. Greet everyone and share with them the target areas in your neighborhood. Be sure to listen to everyone’s ideas and incorporate them with yours as best as possible. Once you’ve all agreed on your first cleanup target, make sure participants are aware of the selected date and time for cleanup day.

Collect Equipment

You can’t have a cleanup without proper equipment. Make sure to bring the following:

  • Trash bags
  • Reusable gloves
  • Close-toed shoes
  • Equipment for picking up trash, like shovels and trowels
  • Paint, rollers and brushes for painting walls and fences
  • Safe containers for sharp objects like needles and razor blades
  • Water and snacks to keep everyone hydrated and energized

Start Cleaning

Now that you’re prepared, go out and start cleaning! Make sure to thank your volunteers. Gather contact information so you can contact them again to get back together for celebration and future cleanup projects.

Take Pictures

Make sure to snap a few photos of the cleanup group as well as the end result!

We’d love to feature pictures of your neighborhood cleanup! If you’d like us to feature your community and pictures from your organized day, send them to

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. I would like to hold a neighborhood clean-up I have the date set and will put out flyers to notify the neighbors I have it set for June 4 but I don’t know how to get it started I really need help so can someone help me pleaseeeeee

    1. Hi Qiana, I’ve shared your question with our Community Relations team and someone from our team will reach out to you shortly to give you tips on where to start. Thanks!

  2. We occupy the church address of 2231 Indiandale for 2 years, we recently left Joy Road and N, Martindale. We worked with neighborhood and kept Joy Road clean, from Grand river to Linwood. Now when we go past their, it would make you cry, But where we are now we are keeping the street clean and engaging children, in our area, as we did in the past. We have 2 Abandoned houses on both sides, we had signed up for afterschool exercise program, but these 2 houses were unappealing and dogs frequently live in one of them, we thought about rehabilitation, but they are beyond repair. and a danger to Congregation, Our address is 2231 Indiandale, off of Davidson.

  3. Could you also contact me about a clean up and starting a block club, they could have meetings at our church. We needed a dumpster, I am sure it would make the people in neighbor hood feel better about where they live.

    1. Hi Gwendolyn, Thanks for contacting us, I’ll pass your inquiry on to our team and see if we may be of assistance. Thanks!

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