Liverpool targets kids to clean up urban streets

Established in 2004, Jigsaw North Liverpool is an environmental partnership funded by the Liverpool Housing Trust and government regeneration body New Heartlands.

Campaign The way to a brighter future
Client Jigsaw North Liverpool
PR team In-house
Timescale March-December 2005
Budget £10,000

Despite the project contributing to a £160,000 saving for the city in its first six months by addressing fly-tipping, graffiti and litter problems, Jigsaw had found it difficult to raise public awareness of its work.

To raise Jigsaw's profile, educate local children and give them a sense of responsibility to curb anti-social behaviour. To deliver messages about prevention to the local community.

Strategy and Plan
In order to involve young people in the project more fully, the in-house team set up a youth warden scheme branded the Jigsaw Youth Squad, initially targeted at 8 to 12-year-olds.

Jigsaw commissioned a video, and held a launch event during the summer at the city's FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) Centre for local children and the media, attended by Hollyoaks actress Christina Bailey. Squad members were given a uniform and it was explained that in return for duties involving street cleaning, focus group input and supporting community events, they would be rewarded with incentives such as vouchers for bikes, toys and games.

The second phase of the campaign focused on education and featured a competition – 'Script to Screen' – for primary school pupils to write and star in a film about the effects of litter and graffiti. The winning entry, 'The way to a brighter future', featuring Anfield Junior School was shown three times a day on the BBC 'Big Screen' in Liverpool city centre for six weeks.

Measurement and Evaluation
The campaign attracted local and national trade press coverage from titles including the Liverpool Echo, Anfield & Walton Star, Regeneration and Renewal and Inside Housing, plus a feature on Liverpool's Radio City 96.7.

At the campaign's launch, 40 children signed up to the Youth Squad and there is now a waiting list to become a member. The scheme has been extended to South Liverpool with an additional 70 members enrolling. Jigsaw has since been asked to set up further squads in neighbouring Runcorn and Crosby.

According to Jigsaw, since the launch incidents of anti-social behaviour in North Liverpool have fallen by 81 per cent and timescales for removing graffiti and fly-tipping have reduced from 14 days to 48 hours.

Catherine Jones, culture reporter for the Liverpool Echo says: 'The PR team was pretty clued up on what angles we might need and photographic opportunities.'

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