The Pick Up the Trash Day


Went to one of those political breakfast seminars this morning, and shared the table with Emma and Elin from the cool Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation. The KSTF run a couple of great campaigns, like the Agricultural Scrap Campaign, but my closest relation with them comes from my childhood, and the Pick Up the Trash Day.

The Pick Up the Trash Day has been a standing tradition for preeschools  and lower compulsory schools all over Sweden for decades. It’s pretty straight forward: Kids go out in their communities with their teachers for a day and pick up trash. I have fond memories of the kid Victor running around the neighbourhood and it’s sorroundings with classmates in the late 80’s spring, armed with a black trash bag, picking up cigarette stumps and thrown away plastic stuff. If one of us spotted a broken bottle or any other shards, we would shout “Mrs! GLASS!!!”, and one of the adults would come and take care of the dangerous pieces.

The next Pick Up the Trash Day happens in the week of April 20th-26th. Last year 220 000 kids (Sweden’s total population is 9 million) participated, and the KSTF hope for even more this year. I have already decided to have my own Pick Up the Trash Day, wherever I am in the world in two months from now. Who wants to join in?


4 Responses to “The Pick Up the Trash Day”

  1. Leila Darabi Says:

    Adorable. I want to see photos of “the kid Victor”. Trash-minded even back then!

  2. dumpstertaoist Says:

    My school encouraged this a lot too. I remember doing it when I was very very little and feeling proud to be helping the neighborhood clean. All that ended suddenly when I picked up a McDonald’s cup that I didn’t realize was covered with ants! Ran screaming home. But I still wound up being a dumpster diver anyhow. Ants shmants. 😛

  3. Pick Up The Trash Day is here! « everydaytrash Says:

    […] Up The Trash Day is here! By Victor Bernhardtz Remember how I wrote in February about the annual Pick Up the Trash Day? Well, now it’s April and kiddos all over Sweden are gearing up to run around and clean up […]

  4. The kids are alright (Decorative Dumpster Jr.) « everydaytrash Says:

    […] Dumpster Jr.) By Victor Bernhardtz Remember I told you all about our lovley Swedish tradition Pick Up the Trash Day? If you log on to this page (in Swedish) of Gävle Municipality, and klick the link “Här kan […]

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