Volunteer Opportunity: Adopt-One-Block Litter Cleanup

Adopt One Block is a local initiative started by Portland resident Frank Moscow in late 2020. Adopt One Block enables you to clean the block you love the most, when and how you want, with cleanup supplies they deliver to you for free. “Block Ambassadors” care for their block. AdoptOneBlock supply the tools, support and connections.

As of January 13, 2022, 90% of the blocks have been adopted in Sunnyside through Adopt One Block (144 blocks adopted and about 16 blocks still seeking adoption). The areas marked in grey on the map have been adopted; thin white lines around grey areas denote block ambassadors that have provided their contact to the SNA Cleanup coordinator; areas in black still need adoption. Click here to open the map in a full size window.

When adopting a block, you are adopting a roundabound route around the block, staying on the same side of the street. Other block ambassadors will clean the other sides of each street on your route. The website will also let you reshape an adopted route in order to accommodate more complex areas that are missing cross streets. If you decide to adopt and need help reshaping your route on the website, contact the SNA Cleanup coordinator for help.

Adopt One Block is a charitable endeavor and is entirely free to adopters. As an block ambassador, you can request free supplies through your account including a trash picker and bags. To enlist or manage your block adoption (including requesting more supplies, adopting a second block or releasing your block if you can no longer cleanup), visit adoptoneblock.org.

If you have adopted a block and haven’t contacted our Cleanup Coordinator yet, we would love to hear from you! For privacy reasons, Adopt One Block is not authorized to share this information directly with us. Knowing who has adopted blocks within Sunnyside lets us improve collaboration and coordination among block ambassadors as well as offer local support. So far, block ambassadors covering about 60 blocks have made themselves known, but we would like to hear from more. On the map, the blocks of known ambassadors are identified with a thin white line around their adopted block. Your contact information will not be shared publicly, but knowing about you will allow our Cleanup Coordinator to privately connect adopters of neighboring blocks if they both choose.

How often you clean your route depends on its location and how quickly litter accumulates. Most residential routes might only need a monthly cleaning, but routes near commercial corridors often need more regular cleanings – weekly or “every 2 weeks”. Making yourself known to the SNA Cleanup Coordinator as an adopter also presents an opportunity for us to help you connect with nearby neighbors in these higher need areas if they are willing to take turns on these more frequent routes.

To make yourself known to the SNA as a block ambassador, or if you ever need help with disposing of excess trash, dealing with larger items that have been dumped, needles or biohazard cleanup, please contact Vincent Dawans, SNA Cleanup Coordinator at [email protected].