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Volunteer or Sponsor: What is the Difference?

Litter removal on our highways is expensive and never ending. Annually more than $11.5 billion is spent to keep roads clean. Each Department of Transportation (DOT) is responsible for their own litter removal expenses – which adds up quickly.

We get lots of inquiries on our program.

We understand, It is confusing. Some states call both programs all Adopt-A-Highway, some specify Sponsor-A-Highway. Even our company name makes it confusing.

So, here it is Volunteer or Sponsor: What is the Difference?

Adopt-A-Highway volunteer and Sponsor-A-Highway programs are both extremely beneficial. They reduce the overall clean-up costs to the DOTs, allowing those saved funds to be used on other infrastructure safety projects. Both are approved and supported by the DOT. Sponsorship is a partnership with a service provider such as ADOPT-A-HIGHWAY LITTER REMOVAL SERVICE OF AMERICA. Volunteer programs are run by the state and are typically coordinated at a more local level.

One of the primary differences in the volunteer & sponsor programs is safety. Many heavily traveled highways just are not safe for volunteers, so they are not available to adopt. Sponsorship programs open up these highways, since litter removal is done by employees that undergo strict safety-training.

Keeping highways free from litter is not an easy or glamorous task,” said AAHLRSA President Alejandro Macia “But we take pride in beautifying the roads and maintaining safety for traveling motorists. We could not do it without our excellent field crews, who are trained extensively in the dangers of working along busy highways.”

Other differences include the frequency and consistency in which the roads are cleaned. Volunteer programs typically require 2 cleanings per year. Many volunteer groups do significantly more than that, but some do the minimum requirement. With a sponsor program, DOTs set the frequency of litter removal based on traffic counts and need. Most sponsored segments are cleaned up between once or twice a month. This frequency means litter build up is reduced year-round.

A final difference is the signage. Since sponsors are supporting highway litter removal through a fee, the signs in most states are larger and include color and logo. Volunteer signs include the name of the volunteer group in black, no colors and no logos.

NAM prolific sponsor for Sponsor-A-Highway in New York & surrounding areas. This sign is in New York City.

Sample of a SPONSOR program sign from New York City.

Bottom line, we all want to help keep the highways clean & people safe!

Check out our MARKETS page to see if there is a SPONSORSHIP program available in your area. For volunteer opportunities, visit your state DOT website.

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National Pet Day – Driving with Fido

Does your pet love to ride in the car?
Some safety tips for driving with your pet on National Pet Day.

Love them, drive safely & don’t put them in danger.

It is very common to see pets as passengers. However, traveling in automobiles can be extremely dangerous for your family pet – and you. It involves more than just loading the animal in the back seat, especially if you will be driving long distances or plan to be away for a long time. Here are a few road safety tips to help you prepare for a smooth and drive with Fido.

Keep pets safe in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. The crate should be large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. Secure the crate so it will not slide or shift in the event of an abrupt stop.

Secure your pet in the car. Just like any passenger, buckle them up.

If you decide to skip the crate, do not allow your pet to ride with his head outside the window. tThe wind can seriously irritate mucous membranes and blow pieces of grit or litter into their eyes. Pets could also be seriously injured  by objects (rocks, litter, etc) as you drive down the road.

It is always recommended that the dog be in the back seat or storage area of the car, especially if the car has airbags. While airbags save lives of people, they can seriously injure pets.

Keep food, a bowl, leash, a waste scoop, plastic bags, grooming supplies, medication and first-aid, and any travel documents.

Be sure to bring bottled water and avoid feeding your pet in a moving vehicle. Drinking water from an area he is not used to could result in stomach troubles.

Never leave your animal alone in a parked vehicle. On a hot day, even with the windows open, a car heat up very quickly. Likewise, in cold weather, a car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold.

Last but not least, always watch the road. As cute as they are, do not let your pet distract you while you’re driving.

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Employee Spotlight: Monica Seymour

All-Star Employee: Monica Seymour, National Operations Director

National Operations Director Monica Seymour gets out to clean up roadside

Litter Removal by Adopt-A-Highway Litter Removal National Operations Director – Monica Seymour

Monica Seymour has been with Adopt-A-Highway Litter Removal Service of America, Inc. for 10 years. Located in our Encinitas headquarters, she runs our Operations Department. Monica works closely with all of our field crews as well as our DOT/Agency partners. One of the BEST things about Monica is that she will literally do anything it takes to get the job done!

Recently, we received a phone call regarding a sponsored segment that needed to be cleaned ASAP. Our crews were in another area and could not get to the location immediately. So, what did Monica do? She put on a hard hat, a safety vest, grabbed a grapple and proceeded to go clean up the 1-mile segment (check out our photo proof).

Monica is a huge asset to Adopt-A-Highway Litter Removal Service of America, Inc. We could not keep the highways clean without her commitment and dedication. Thank you, Monica!

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New Years Resolution – Take a Phone Break

This New Years we are making a firm Resolution to:

Every day at every turn, you see people staring at their smartphones in public while eating, walking and driving. Are they receiving urgent emails or texts? Most likely not. They (like us) are checking headlines, watching a show or sports, catching up on social media or playing the latest game. Smartphones are integrated in our lives and are a valuable tool, but for most of us it has become a habit to check phones almost constantly. So, we are suggesting a New Year’s Resolution of taking a break from your smartphone every day (and ALWAYS while driving).

We are NOT crazy, just suggesting a 15-minute period one to two times per day that the phone is off-limits. See what happens – maybe more face-to-face interaction or being more present.

We are up for the challenge, are you?

 

 

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Happy & Safe Thanksgiving: Tips to Keep You Safe

Family, friends and food are all things to be grateful for this Thanksgiving weekend. Being together makes holidays extra special. But getting there is not always an easy task. According to AAA, an estimated 45.5 million people will spend some of the Thanksgiving weekend driving. Even with higher gas prices, travelers are expected to take to the road. The 2017 holiday weekend will see the highest travel volume since 2005.

AAA Thanksgiving Travel Forecast for 2017

If you’ll be hitting the road tomorrow, stay safe & be patient. Follow these tips for making it to Thanksgiving dinner on time and in one piece.

  1. Check road conditions before you leave
  2. Make sure you have an emergency kit
  3. Put devices away, but make sure they are fully charged for an emergency
  4. Assign navigating duties to a passenger
  5. Make a plan for kids, so they do not become a distraction while driving
  6. Buckle up – everybody, every trip, every time
  7. Designate a sober driver
  8. Get plenty of rest, drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as driving drunk
  9. Be patient and courteous to other drivers

We wish you a very happy & safe Thanksgiving!

Your friends at Adopt-A-Highway Litter Removal Services of America, Inc.

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It is National Pumpkin Day!

October 26th is National Pumpkin Day – an unofficial holiday to be sure, but one we can all get behind!

The best pumpkins have long, hard stems & no soft spots.

Did you know? Pumpkin is a winter squash and is technically a fruit.

Did you know? That there are over 45 different varieties of pumpkin.

Did you know? Pumpkins range in color from white, to red, to even blue!

Did you know? The United States produces about 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins every year.

Pumpkins are amazingly versatile, they can be used in sweet, savory, spicy, or salty dishes! Pumpkins are packed with potassium and Vitamin A, as well as fiber. You can bake them, boil them, steam them, puree them, even fry them. With so many ways to prepare pumpkins, and so many flavors you can add to them, there is guaranteed to be a way that appeals to everyone. One of the MOST popular dishes is pumpkin pie, an autumn stable in many households. But, how about celebrating today by trying a new pumpkin recipe? Find lots of great recipes at Allrecipes.com

One of the best parts of cooking with real pumpkin is the seeds. Baked pumpkin seeds are an incredibly tasty and healthy, autumn snack!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe

Wash & dry pumpkin seeds

Preheat over to 300

Put seeds in large Ziploc bag with 2 T. of olive oil and 1 T. salt. Mix around to coat all seeds.

Place seeds on baking sheet in single layer on parchment paper

Bake for 45 minutes until toasted – turned once or twice to toast all sides. Let cool slightly before enjoying.

Additional add ins: grated Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, Cajun spice – really anything works!

This post had nothing to do with litter removal and it should go without saying, but we will say it anyway just to be safe. Please dispose of your pumpkins properly, don’t chuck them in the streets. They are not fun to clean up!

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Why Sponsor-A-Highway? Because it works

Why Sponsor-A-Highway?

Sponsorship is defined as:

The financial or in-kind support of an activity, used primarily to reach specified business goals.”

Sponsorship is the fastest growing form of marketing in the U.S. It provides the ability to shape public perception in a way that is difficult with in-house marketing and branding efforts. And, sponsorship allows smaller companies to compete with larger companies. You can reach a small local market or large national market depending upon what you sponsor. There are literally thousands of opportunities to sponsor. All of which will increase your credibility, image, and prestige. Sponsorship is viewed in an extremely positive way. Consumers that see businesses making a greater effort to support the community or causes they feel are important are more likely to support that business.

May we suggest litter removal via Sponsor-A-Highway?!

Many municipalities and state agencies have addressed their funding shortfalls by selling naming rights for parks and buildings, train stations and more. Sponsor-a-Highway is similar. Litter removal costs are significant to transportation departments, by implementing a Sponsor-A-Highway program these costs are reduced. Sponsors pay a fee for litter removal and get a sign recognizing their sponsorship. Funds saved can then be used for other road safety initiatives.

Why Sponsor-A-Highway? Because it works!

 

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