Youth group ‘do their bit’ to tackle litter

Callum Beaddie litter picking with youth worker June Paterson
Callum Beaddie litter picking with youth worker June Paterson

The Newton Stewart Senior Youth Group run by Creetown Initiative joined the Community Safety Team on their Day of Action on Wednesday last week.

The Community Safety Team are tasked with dealing with many forms of low-level antisocial behaviour ranging from dog fouling to littering to neighbourhood disputes.

More than a dozen officers; over half of the teams’ strength; had been out and about in the new Council Ward 2 on Wednesday 6th September.

Ward 2 extends from Castle Kennedy in the west to Creetown in the east and down to the Isle of Whithorn. Throughout the day they engaged with the public in various communities, listened to their concerns and put plans in place to tackle the issues they have the remit to deal with.

In the evening, the Community Safety Team gave a presentation to the Newton Stewart Senior Youth Group, revolving around littering.

The group learned about what litter actually was and its wider damage to the community. Although the youngsters admitted they were responsible for some of the litter, the younger generation are not responsible for all litter. For example, on a recent survey, 21% of the litter found was smoking related, yet none of the group smoke.

The Newton Stewart Senior Youth Group found out how the local authority, as well as Keep Scotland Beautiful, conduct a litter survey to find how clean our streets and roads actually are.

Various items come into the survey ranging from dog fouling to vandalism, to a new word for many – detritus.

The group broke up into three groups with a youth worker and a community safety officer, conducted a survey of certain areas, then litter picked the worst areas.

Unfortunately some of the worst affected areas for litter are well known to the Community Safety Team, and the main one was pointed out by an elected member during the planning stages. Although the youth group was “happy to do their bit” to keep the community clean and tidy, the weather eventually beat them on the evening.

Creetown Initiative was set-up in 2004 by local people who wanted to make a difference in their community.

It is concerned with the regeneration of the village of Creetown and the surrounding area, with a focus on sustainable development, community regeneration, youth work and local culture/heritage. For more information on Creetown Initiative please contact creetown@btconnect.com