It’s game on for MSP Joan as she backs new fun anti-litter scheme

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A pioneering new invention which encourages children to be tidy by making rubbish disposal fun is being backed by South of Scotland MSP Joan McAlpine.
 
Youngsters can now drop their litter into a specially designed bin modelled on a basketball net, making tidiness cool and encouraging them to compete with each other in throwing away things like crisp packets and sweetie papers.

A pioneering new invention which encourages children to be tidy by making rubbish disposal fun is being backed by South of Scotland MSP Joan McAlpine.
 
Youngsters can now drop their litter into a specially designed bin modelled on a basketball net, making tidiness cool and encouraging them to compete with each other in throwing away things like crisp packets and sweetie papers.

The basketball bin, which has been installed at St Josephs College in Dumfries, is the brainchild of businessman and anti-litter campaigner Mark Jardine. It has been manufactured by a local ironwork company, Gibson the Blacksmith.
 
Ms McAlpine explained: “Mark noticed that his clean up messages were less effective on older kids so he came up with this idea. It has been a huge success with the youngsters as it encourages competition between them and turns getting rid of litter into a game they thoroughly enjoy.
 
“Another advantage is that it keeps them fit – it really is a win-win situation. I’d like to see this picked up in other schools in the region and indeed across Scotland – children everywhere love a challenge.
 
“Litter is a serious problem and this is a brilliant way of addressing it. It gets rid of the rubbish in a fun way and hopefully will help children learn about respect for the environment at the same time.”
 
Mark Jardine, who runs the Peoples Project in Dumfries which aims to put pride into the town, said he hoped the UK clean up in advance of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee would encourage further interest in his basketball bin.
 
“I reckon they could be made out of plastic too. When it comes to litter, there is no simple solution.”
 
He also backed a regional and national rollout of the scheme. “We would like to get them in all the high schools in Dumfries – hopefully it will be something that the whole country will embrace.
 
“The Diamond Jubilee clean-up is a great idea but it should inspire us to ensure our communities stay clean all year. 
 
There’s no point just sitting moaning about the litter hoping someone else will sort it out. We must all take the initiative.
The bin could work in any school, sports ground or place where teenagers congregate. It just needs to be on a wall.”
 
Bernadette Jones, Headteacher at St. Josephs College, commented, “Like all schools in Dumfries and Galloway, we are committed to tackling the litter issue and making pupils aware of the importance of respecting our environment both locally and beyond.
 
“We welcome any new approaches to these issues and the basketball bin certainly falls into that category. The response from our pupils has been very positive.”