Plawking for cleaner outside spaces

Plogging is a trend that brings together jogging and litter picking. Sussex Partnership introduce Plawking for a less intensive outside experience that still gets the place cleaned up…

Plawking for cleaner outside spaces

Working at your own pace

Paula Bellers is a Communications Officer in Research and Development at Sussex Partnership who wants to make Mill View Hospital a clean, green space for staff and service users alike.

She heard about plogging from Dr Mel Moss who is a keen supporter of Care Without Carbon, but felt that jogging and litter picking was a bit too strenuous for her dodgy knees; instead she said, “I am up for plawking, which can be done at my pace. And if Mutley Moss (Mel’s patient friendly dog) wants to join us, there will be a bit of paw-king too!”

Mel suggested it would be a constructive activity for some of the inpatients to join them, and to comply with safety regulations they needed to have some proper litter picking equipment. The team requested some gardening gloves and litter pincers, which the estates and facilities team were able to supply.

Paula was delighted the equipment could be made available and said, “Once we have the site tidy, we’re going to do some planting around a bench – I raised funds for a bench for a late colleague and have funds for some hardy, low maintenance plants, so it would be nice to see it come together.”

Making plans a reality

Paula explained why she as was so keen to get plawking, “Every time I parked to go to work at Sussex Education Centre, on the Mill View Hospital site I noticed the rubbish in the bushes and decided to do something about it. I subscribe to the old adage that if you’re not part of the solution, then maybe you’re part of the problem! A few of us from the research team like to take a walk at lunchtime and thought it would be nice to get outside and do something constructive too.”

The amazing litter pickers! L-R Charlotte Dunkeld, Paula Bellers, Debbie Coton.

In two sessions there wasn’t a piece of litter to be seen and the team even separated all the recyclables too. The success of the first litter pick has boosted Paula and team to do more, “We are now set up to do this whenever we need to. Dr Mel Moss is planning to join us and bring little Mutley Moss along to help and some patients if they fancy it.”

“Last year we also raised funds for a memorial bench for our late colleague, Ruth Chandler, plus plants to go around the bench on the Mill View site. By the time we got the bench, last summer, the ground was too dry, so I’m ordering plants now and our litter-picking crew will extend our outdoor sessions to gardening (digging and planting) and then maintaining. We tend to do this on Mondays at 12.30pm. If anyone wants to join us, they are very welcome.”

You can do it too

If you want to work in a cleaner, greener space and think your team could be up for a bit of plawking then do get in touch at hello@carewithoutcarbon.org

We invite you to make a pledge to do something different to help us create a greener NHS and a better working life – it takes only a minute and you can do it here.