2021 Non-Profit Organisation Awards

12 Acquisition International - 2021 Non-Profit Organisations Awards Most Environmentally Friendly Cleaning Organisation – Utrecht he organisation focuses on encouraging dog owners around the world to pick up at least one piece of litter per walk. Joy the dog loves collecting litter and is an inspiration for dog owners to train their dogs in a fun way so that they will do the same. Enjoycleaningup founder, Alex van Eck, along with his dog, Joy, love nothing more than going outside, and while they’re out there, they clean up their environment, and sometimes, even join other people at litter picking events. They also try to inspire others to take part or to change their behaviour by organising their own clean-ups throughout the Netherlands. It helps enormously when a dog cheerfully runs around and cleans up whatever they can find. Alex is also increasingly invited to events as a guest speaker, of course joined by Joy. Cleaning up is important, but without information, nothing changes. That is why Alex and Joy (and sometimes his other dog, Bas) visit primary schools often to share their story and provide information. Then they will go outside and collect litter with the children. In secondary education and universities, the story is more important than the presence of the dogs, so Alex usually visits with a digital version of the dogs. Wait until the students hear how many social media followers the organisation has and suddenly they have their full attention! However, due to COVID-19, Alex and co have been unable to go into schools, so they have been producing more content for the organisation’s website and social media. The pandemic also meant that they couldn’t organise clean-ups with large groups or companies. Eventually though, as more people began meeting outside, this became an advantage as clean-ups could be arranged again. This hasn’t been Enjoycleaningup’s only challenge though; it has been struggling with regard to funding too. It does have donors, but people don’t want to be obligated to give money every month to any foundation; they’d rather only when they want to. Donors can give a one-time donation via the organisation’s website, but its initiative to become a monthly donor includes a free chocolate Labrador cuddle toy or squeezer, inspired by Joy. Many dog owners have been inspired by Alex and Joy, having trained their own dogs to clean up litter on a daily basis around the world. To continue growing Enjoycleaningup’s club of “local heroes”, Alex is offering training and/or workshops for dog owners who would T like to take part. Anyone who is interested can sign up via the Enjoycleaningup website. In the meantime, the following tips will help you train your dog to search for and retrieve litter. You should start by focusing on one type of waste and use a clear term for your dog, such as “Find bottle”. It’s important to take time to practice and treat rewards are useful for teaching your dog to pick up a bottle and bring it back. The treat should come out of the bottle, not out of your pocket, so your dog will find the bottle important. Next, it’s important to not do clean-up work while there are a lot of people around and to let your dog know when to start looking; this will help it distinguish between a bottle in use at someone’s picnic and a bottle that’s been thrown on the ground. This can also be done by putting a dog harness on while searching, and teaching the dog that as soon as the harness comes off, it’s time to rest. Finally, of course, you can help your dog by helping pick up litter yourself. For those whose dogs are helping to make the world a cleaner place, you can sign up for a spot on Enjoycleaningup’s ‘Local Heroes’ page on its website! Enjoycleaningup is a non-profit organisation centred around a dog named Joy who is trained to pick up plastic bottles, juice cartons and soda cans that are thrown on the ground. The goal is to clean up the outdoors and give the world and its creatures a chance to heal again, as well as to save animals from injuring themselves on litter or other waste. May21348 Company: Enjoycleaningup Contact: Alex van Eck Email: [email protected] Website: www.enjoycleaningup.com

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