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Community Environmental Programs

GLAD Cleaning the Capital

Cleaning the Capital is a citywide cleanup campaign that occurs in the spring and fall of every year.

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Litter

Ottawa prides itself on being a clean, green, litter and graffiti-free city.

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Adopt-a-park, Adopt-a-road

Adopt-a-park or road is a city-wide program that encourages community involvement in the care and maintenance of parks and roadways. It is a partnership between volunteers and the City. The program is open to community groups and individuals of all ages who want to take an active role in enhancing the quality of life in our community.

Volunteers take on park or roadway clean up projects to improve safety and promote a healthy natural environment by keeping the City clean, green, and free of litter and graffiti. In addition, by removing the debris and litter from the City streets, it ultimately protects the water quality of our rivers and fish habitats.

Adopt volunteers make a commitment to cleaning up a park or roadway:

  • A minimum of twice a year - once in the spring and once in the fall
  • For a period of two to five years to provide continuity

To acknowledge these important efforts, a sign presenting the name of the adopting individual or group is displayed on the park or roadway throughout the adoption period.

The City's role

  • Respond to inquiries within 10 days
  • Coordinate necessary approvals
  • Provide cleanup and/or graffiti removal supplies
  • Install signage
  • Collect litter when notified
  • Provide agreement renewal opportunities
  • Coordinate the provision of loaned cleanup tools

Safety Measures

Your safety as a volunteer is our main concern. As the work is located in parks and along the edge of roadways, there are some hazards involved, but following a few important steps will help ensure your safety.

Do

  • Do work only in daylight and fair weather.
  • Do car pool if possible and park a safe distance from the pavement edge when working on a roadway.
  • Do walk facing traffic for increased visibility.
  • Do be sun safe.
  • Do leave tied garbage bags well off the roadside, visible to road crews.
  • Do cross the road only at pedestrian crosswalks.

Do not

  • Don't pick up litter or debris from the roadway surface, median, or close to the edge of the roadway.
  • Don't pick up anything you believe may be hazardous. Flag the area and call the City at 3-1-1 for pick-up.
  • Don't bring along small children or pets when working on a roadway.
  • Don't work during peak rush hours on a roadway.
  • Don't distract drivers.

Before you start working, the group leader should examine the site to determine if conditions are appropriate for the ages and abilities of the volunteers.

Become a volunteer

To apply for the Adopt-a-park or Adopt-a-road program online, please complete the appropriate application form below:

New Request

Adopt-a-park Application Form

Adopt-a-road Application Form

Renewal Request

Adopt-a-park/Adopt-a-road Renewal Form

For more information on the Adopt-a-park or Adopt-a-road program, please contact:

Adopt Program
100 Constellation Dr, 5th floor
Ottawa, Ontario
K2G 6J8
Tel.: 3-1-1
TTY: 613-580-2401
E-mail: adopt@ottawa.ca

Environmental funding

Community Energy Innovation Fund, Community Environmental Projects Grant Program... 

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Community gardens

There are over 80 community gardens in the City of Ottawa which are managed by Just Food's Community Gardening Network.

The Community Gardening Network is an information-and resource-sharing network that supports sustainable development of community gardens within the city. The network works with private and public landowners to increase access to land for community gardens in the city.

For more information and a complete list of existing community gardens in Ottawa: