Niagara College, Brock University team up for virtual spring clean up

garbage clean up Joanna Lucas, a Niagara College personal support worker student, participating in the Oct. 2020 virtual cleanup. Niagara College Photo

Niagara College and Brock University are teaming up to host a virtual spring cleanup from April 17 to 25 and are encouraging community members to join them.

In an effort to help build more sustainable communities, the institutions have come together to launch a tool kit that will make it easier for the public to safely hold cleanup events across Niagara and beyond.

Specific guidelines are provided to help students, community members and organizations take part in cleanup initiatives in a safe manner.

The kit includes information and simple steps on how to host or join a community cleanup any time, anywhere. Resources also direct participants to their local health guidelines to ensure all COVID-19 restrictions are followed throughout the process.

To kick-start the community involvement as Earth Day approaches on April 22, Brock and Niagara College will host a Virtual Spring cleanup for students from April 17 to 25. This is the second joint virtual cleanup the schools have collaborated on, with the first held last fall.

After the first event, organizers began receiving inquiries about how to host a cleanup, resulting in the creation of the public tool kit.

Niagara College’s sustainability program and outreach co-ordinator Amber Schmucker said the college has been hosting fall cleanups for many years. Due to COVID-19, Niagara College decided to shift their cleanup to an online format and saw this an opportunity to connect with community partners to increase outreach, thus their collaboration with Brock University came about last fall.

“People understand and can visually see the impact of them picking up litter off the ground and putting it into a garbage bag. So it’s usually a really great way, and an approachable and accessible way, to engage students in what we do from the outset of the semester,” said Schmucker.

She said events like these are important because they serve as a “gateway” to environmental, social and climate change action in the community.

The virtual clean up tool kit is available at