The Anacostia Watershed Society's Earth Day Cleanup is AWS's largest annual volunteer event. Typically, on the Saturday following Earth Day nearly thousands of volunteers come out to dozens of different sites around the watershed to pick-up trash, serve their communities, and enjoy the Anacostia River.
This event is a success thanks to all of our amazing community partners and leaders. Most of our sites are lead by volunteer leaders who have been organizing clean-ups in their communities for years, and we are always seeking more leaders! If you are interested in nominating a site in your community for Earth Day, or if you are interested in becoming a site leader, you can click here.
Any questions? You can email Stacy Lucas at [email protected]. We provide each of these community leaders with training and supply them with the tools to lead a fantastic clean-up.
Registration opens on March 20!
Note: Protocols and requirements are subject to change based on state, local, and federal guidance and/or our own organizational determinations.
Volunteers must agree and comply to our COVID-19 protocols in order to participate. You will be required to agree to the following statements during registration:
The Anacostia Watershed Society’s Earth Day Cleanup is a DC-area tradition where thousands of volunteers cleanup sites all along the Anacostia River and its tributary streams throughout the watershed in DC, Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties.
Registration opens on March 20. When it does, you can choose a site from the map on the main page, register for it, then come to that location on Earth Day and make a difference for the Anacostia River! The rest of this FAQ has more details.
Yes! In order to volunteer at the 2023 Earth Day Cleanup, pre-registration is required for each individual via AWS’s website. This includes each participant completing our on-line waiver form with registration.
You will receive an confirmation email from [email protected] with more details from your site.
Very few sites are accepting walk ups, and registration is required if a participant shows up without doing so prior.
In 2023, we are looking to cut down on our own waste by sending a smaller number of shirts to each site. When you check in on the morning of the Earth Day Cleanup, your site leader will decide how to distribute shirts (at the beginning, end, as a prize, etc.)
Yes! Please pay attention to the site information, because some sites are a little too burdensome for little hands. Sites that are not recommended for children are clearly marked on the map of volunteer sites. We trust that parents will make informed decisions about what is best for themselves and their families.
Yes! If you bring the paperwork, AWS site leaders and staff at your site will sign off on your child’s hours.
Unfortunately, all volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a responsible adult over 18. Everyone needs to register online.
Members of groups are strongly encouraged to sign up individually. Groups of 10 or more should contact our Volunteer Manager, Emily Castelli at [email protected] to reserve spots for your team. A group can reserve up to 50 spots at a clean-up site by Tuesday, April 4th, but will need to fill those spots by Friday, April 7th. At that time, any unregistered reserved spots will be released to the public.
Corporate groups are encouraged to contact Emily Conrad at [email protected] or at 301-699-6204 x111 for more information about volunteering, and the benefits of becoming an Earth Day sponsor!
It is wonderful that so many volunteers participate in the AWS Earth Day Cleanup, and we plan to have as many people that each site needs to become cleaner. Sometimes these sites get full… but the sites that aren’t full still need you! We kindly ask that you pick your second choice site.
If the site that you want still has spots available, just re-enter your registration for the new site. Send an email to [email protected] so we can delete the registration that you don’t want.
Once you have registered, please only contact your site leader with site specific questions or concerns about location and directions. You can find your site leader contact information in the confirmation email you receive upon registering. We encourage you to have your site leader's phone number handy on the day of the event in case you need assistance finding your site that morning.