Livermore Recycles Outreach to Single Family Homes
Client: Livermore Recycles (City of Livermore)
Date: Fall 2017 and Spring 2018
Key Personnel: Gwynn Mackellen, Co-Project Lead; Laura McKaughan, Co-Project Lead
√ Conducted door-to-door outreach to 1,444 homes over seven weekends in 2017; completed follow up visits to those homes in 2018.
√ Visited many homes 2-3 times to reach as many residents as possible with bilingual staff.
√ Nearly 800 kitchen pails were delivered to residents to assist them with collecting their food waste.
√ Over 92% of residents spoken with committed to participation in the composting and recycling program.
√ Following out 2017 outreach, there was a 14% drop in organics contamination on that route.
Livermore Recycles hired Envirolutions Consulting to conduct door-to-door outreach to single family homes in a neighborhood with low participation rates in the composting and recycling programs, and high rates of contamination. This neighborhood contained a large number of Spanish-speaking residents, so Envirolutions included at least one Spanish-speaker on each of the four outreach teams, as well as a script and program information in Spanish. Gwynn Mackellen served as team lead.
Follow Up Visits
Envirolutions was rehired to conduct follow up visits to these households the following year, bringing back five of the previous team members as well as the team lead to determine whether our outreach was effective in improving residents' participation in the organics and recycling program.
We used Survey Monkey and iPads to collect data from residents we had spoken with as well as those who had only received literature. These visits also included an offer to audit customers' carts with them to point out any items in the wrong waste stream. This provided a personalized, visual learning experience that many said they learned a lot from.
Our fall 2017 outreach involved conducting 7 weekends of door-to-door outreach contacting 1,444 homes, almost all single family. Nearly all households received literature from us, and our team was able to have conversations with just under 900 of these. Four hundred and fifty-five customers requested kitchen pails to aid them in collecting food scraps and food-soiled paper. Two-thirds of those not already composting asked for a pail and agreed to begin using this service, and more than 9 out of 10 residents committed to properly compost and recycle.
Our spring 2018 outreach determined that 81% of residents with whom we spoke the previous year were using their organics cart for food and 70% for food-soiled paper vs. 68% and 57%, respectively, of those with whom we had not had conversations.