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On May 11, 2015, Euharlee Elementary School received the Grand Prize for winning Keep Bartow Beautiful's Ninth Annual School Recycling Contest. A well-known North Georgia Professional Wildlife and Animal Education Company, Wildlife Wonders, presented a school-wide program for the students. Euharlee collected 80,060 pounds of mixed paper, cardboard, cans, and bottles to win the prize, or 135.2 pounds per student for the 592 students. Winners were awarded $4,000 worth of prizes in three divisions. This year, 26 schools/school facilities recycled 423,080 pounds of cans, bottles, cardboard boxes, and mixed paper. The contest began with eight schools and the support of Anheuser-Busch Recycling and the Cartersville Anheuser-Busch Brewery, with the local operation providing ongoing support. The results have been astonishing -- over 2,000 tons of recyclable materials have been recovered voluntarily through Bartow County, the City of Cartersville, and Excel Academy schools through voluntary teams of teachers, students, parents and staff, with the support of Bartow County Solid Waste. Tom Bennett of Wildlife Wonders wows the crowd with an albino boa constrictor. Bennett explains to the students how they help protect wildlife habitat, such as jungles, forests, rivers and regions mined for minerals, when they recycle.

Keep Bartow Beautiful, Cartersville, GA

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Waste Management Think Green Grant - "Where Does Waste Go?" Field Trips! Keep Charleston Beautiful (KCB) , Charleston County Environmental Management, and Charleston County School District teamed up for the 2014/2015 Keep America Beautiful/Waste Management Think Green Grant to provide free field trips for local schools to the area’s recycling center and landfill/compost facility. School transportation was paid for using grant funds and Charleston County provided free tours upon arrival. Charleston County School District promoted the grant through emails and website posts. KCB was thrilled to received applications for the free trips from 23 different schools, 12 of which are Title I schools. Nineteen schools went on the trips using grant-provided funds. Thirteen teachers responded to the follow-up survey: nine indicated they would not have been able to send their students on these field trips without the Think Green Grant; two teachers said they possibly could have but likely not; two said they would have gone without grant funds. The Think Green Grant also provided KCB with the opportunity to print customized posters featuring real students inspiring other students. The posters are provided for free to all schools in Charleston. The KAB/Waste Management Think Green Grant provided over 1,200 local students with the opportunity to learn where their waste goes. THANK YOU!

Keep Charleston Beautiful, Charleston, SC

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On May 15, 2015, Marathon Oil, along with Serve Moore and Home Depot, joined together in Forest Park Estates to help clean up the debris left in the aftermath of the tornado that passed through Bridge Creek on May 6. The families affected in the Forest Park Estates tornado were so moved by their presence, several documented the event and cried tears of joy, giving them huge thanks for their efforts.  Flying Pig BBQ supported the volunteers by providing lunch at a discounted rate and by waving the travel fee when they learned what Marathon Oil was doing with Serve Moore! The group was able to clean up the fence line along the property that was damaged so that the fence crew could come in and put up the new fence sooner.  Volunteers were able to gather 175 heavy duty bags of trash (by crumbling the debris to fit in the bags since the dumpsters were full), and load and haul off two trailers of debris and trash. Unfortunately, they were hindered due to the fact that the dumpsters were full, but they were able to organize the debris in several piles along the road and other access areas for easy haul off once dumpsters were emptied. They also had a crew go to a home and take down a rock wall fence that had been knocked over during a recent tornado. A volunteer crew removed carpet from a home that was destroyed by flood water. Finally, they had a crew that helped tarp a roof to prevent more flood damage with more rain in the forecast. Commenting on the event, Joy Howard, Marathon Oil Planning Analyst, said, “This work was so gratifying and the residents were so humbled. Several cried and took photos of their own because they have had very little local support to clean up. Many said the work we did was more than the work they have done combined since the tornado!” Great work Marathon Oil!

Keep Oklahoma Beautiful, Oklahoma City, OK

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Extreme Martin Makeover revitalizes 25 homes in Port Salerno The New Monrovia neighborhood of Port Salerno, Florida, has a fresh new look after 25 homes received extreme facelifts. Habitat Angel, in partnership with Keep Martin Beautiful, worked to paint, landscape, and repair homes in desperate need of restoration. This huge undertaking was accomplished with the help of more than 350 volunteers from 14 different groups. Despite a work delay due to inclement weather, the dedicated volunteers came together on weekends from Feb. 7 through April 18 to finish the job. After devoting over 1,500 hours to the project, volunteers painted 25 houses, repaired the roofs of three homes, and made minor exterior repairs to several homes at no charge to the occupants. “An event like this requires a tremendous amount of coordination and Habitat Angel has been leading this effort for seven years,” said Jim Dragseth, president of Keep Martin Beautiful. “KMB helps provide supplies, promotion of the event and some additional volunteer resources, but Extreme Martin Makeover would not be the success it is without the dedication and passion of Habitat Angel and its ability to mobilize such a significant amount of people to make real and lasting improvements in these communities.” “Our volunteers and the community really came together and put their hearts into fixing up these homes,” said Hank Meira of Habitat Angel. “It’s so gratifying to see the fruits of our labors and the smiles on the residents’ faces.” One beneficiary of the Extreme Martin Makeover was Barbara Kerstein, a New Monrovia resident and single grandmother living with three grandchildren and a 3-year-old great granddaughter. This year, volunteers donated time and materials to paint the exterior of her home, make repairs to her roof as well as an interior wall that was collapsing. “It brought tears to my eyes to have the community come together with Habitat Angel and make a real difference in our neighborhood and to my home,” said Barbara. “Without the volunteers’ help we would have never been able to get all of these repairs done. “My grandkids will be joining in Extreme Martin Makeover as volunteers next year,” added Barbara. “Even my 3-year-old great granddaughter grabbed a paintbrush to help!" Valspar paint, in association with Habitat for Humanity’s “A Brush of Kindness” program, donated about 400 gallons of paint for the exterior of the 25 homes. Other sponsors included: Keep Martin Beautiful; Capps Roofing Inc.; Remax of Stuart; Martin County; Mighty Mattress; Tidy Coast Event Services; Redeemer Lutheran; Waste Management; Habitat for Humanity; Tent Logix; the Ciferri Group; Lowe’s; St. Mary’s Episcopal; Jimmy Smith’s BBQ, Christ Fellowship Church, Victory Garden International, City Church, Peter’s Hardware, JBHS Basketball, Port Salerno Church of God, Florida Power and Light, Coastal Life Church, The Firefly Group, Iglesia Cristiana Nueva Vi.

Keep Martin Beautiful, Port Salerno, FL

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