Young Litter-Picker

751. Wilfrid Chaffey (Newcastle)

Wilfrid, an eight-year-old volunteer from Newcastle, is helping to keep the streets of his community clean.

He started a litter picking group in Fenham, Newcastle, which is tackling litter in his primary school and the local area. He came up with a slogan for the group (“We won’t put up with litter any more”) and has become the focal point of the anti-litter campaign for the local community.

He has spoken about the campaign to over 500 pupils in local schools, explaining the importance of keeping our streets clean. Wilfrid has personally collected over 200 bags of litter, and uses his playtime every Wednesday to pick up litter in the playground. His dedication has inspired many friends to join his anti-litter group, and his work has also inspired a second litter-picking group nearby.

In a personal letter to Wilfrid, Prime Minister Theresa May said:

“Your litter-picking project is helping to keep the streets of Newcastle clean and raise awareness of the issue in schools across the area. You have become an inspiration to the community in Fenham, and you should feel very proud of what you have achieved so far, especially at such a young age.”

Wilfrid’s local Member of Parliament, Chi Onwura MP, said: 

“Wilf is a credit to his family and the neighbourhood. The enthusiasm and the example he has set as part of the Greening Wingrove project is an inspiration. Wilf and his fellow team members show how everyone can make a difference in making their streets and lanes better places.”

Wilfrid said:

I am very excited to be given this award and grateful to my friends and family for helping me with the litter picks, especially my little brother Ted. I have made lots of new friends on the Wednesday litter-picks. It’s really good fun, but not in the rain! It makes me feel proud when we have cleaned up a street and happy when people say thank you. But I wish more people picked up litter and looked after where they live.”

The daily Points of Light award recognises outstanding individual volunteers - people who are making a change in their community.

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