Every little helps...
Last night, North London Cares launched hastily in the face of the riots in communities across London -- calling on people in this city to "build, not destroy", and to be part of the clean up operation in our capital. The response we've had -- and the response of Londoners self-organising everywhere -- has been incredible.
Well over 100 people tweeted to our "Clean up London" call to action last night, with dozens more sharing that call to volunteer on Facebook and Google+ today and encouraging their friends to take part too. The result was that scores of you -- people from all across north London -- were raring to go, and to show the rioters that Londoners will not be cowed.
16-year-old Jake Mulley (@carboia) travelled to Camden and then made it across the river to Clapham, where he was amongst hundreds of people who showed up to be part of the clean up in South London.
@WeeMissBea went to Hackney Town Hall this morning to offer her support.
And later, after we'd directed people away from Camden and Hackney once the local authorities told us their street cleaners had most of the mess covered in those areas, we sent @LarkyTheGreat to join Jake in Clapham -- he just tweeted us "Great to see everyone coming together. Solidarity." Throughout the day, though, the real heroes of London's mobilisation effort were @RiotCleanUp, a group who organised online to spread word about clean up locations across the capital, and which we were asked to share via North London Cares' networks this morning. It's amazing work like this -- work like yours -- which has led The Evening Standard tonight to say:
"Already the clean up is beginning in devastated neighbourhoods, co-ordinated by friends and neighbours -- in part via Twitter"
We've even received a kind message of thanks from the Mayor of London,"Just been to Clapham where I thanked some of those involved. Special mention goes to @NLCares @Riotcleanup @cleantottenham @RebuildCroydon."
This afternoon, I bumped into one volunteer, Simon, on Camden High Street, who'd earlier been interviewed by Sky News about why he wanted to help. He simply said:
"I just wanted to do something constructive."
Our sentiments exactly, Simon.
Thank you to everyone who has helped clean up London so far.
Posted by Alex Smith on Tuesday 9th August 2011
Alex is NLC's founder and CEO.