Eager Beavers get set to clearing Tipton St John of litter
- Credit: Jo Earlam
A tidy community group has been launched in Tipton St John by two NHS frontline workers.
Intensive care nurse Lisette Johnston and her husband Clinton, who works in the emergency department, have been litter picking around the village on their days off and have now launched a new group called the Eager Beavers.
Lisette said: “When I was outside on my days off the idea came to me to collect litter locally, good for the environment and good for me to 'make a difference'. The improvement in Tipton St John has already been significant and hopefully local people will see this and wish to get involved as well.
“It’s very therapeutic to be outside and be doing something positive. When working, I spend 12 and a half hours in the intensive care unit in full PPE and so my days off enable me to re-set and do something normal. I am passionate about reducing waste so it's a win-win situation.
“My main concern is not so much the collection of litter, but how do we stop people from throwing it away in the first place?”
Lisette and Clinton have been joined by Jo Earlam, who also lives in the village, and young resident Jack Webb, who is gathering up litter as part of his Duke of Edinburgh award scheme.
Jo said: “An increase in rubbish in the countryside has been one of the impacts of lockdown life. More people out walking, eating in the open air instead of in pubs and cafes, leaving behind strewn coffee cups, discarded drinks cans and an array of plastic, crisp packets, sweet wrappers, and bottles, as well as the tell-tale signs of epidemic living, plastic gloves, and disposable face masks.
“But disposing of these single use items does not mean throwing in a hedge, hurling from a car window, or casually dropping underneath benches. It means disposing of them in a bin.”
She said of Lisette and Clinton: “Saving lives one day, saving the planet the next. That’s not rubbish. That’s amazing. Thanks, Lisette and Clinton Johnston, for inspiring me.
“We may not be able to change the world, but we can change our world.”