In 2018 St Peter’s College in New Zealand implemented a large number of Litter Less activities, which focused on sustainability. They changed the school bin system and then implemented a programme to inform the staff and students on how the new bin system worked. The school reduced waste to landfill by approx. 1.5 tonnes. Students also produced a poster using the packaging and products sold by the school tuck-shop to inform students about the correct bin for each type of waste.
Moreover, they built waste stations to increase recycling and reduce the amount of waste going into landfill and began a planting project. They installed a raised vegetable bed and worm farms, and the vegetables grown were donated to the Auckland City Mission.
The most popular initiative was the ‘Golden Ticket promotion’: In an attempt to get students to actually notice litter, ‘Golden Tickets’ containing various prizes were hidden around the school at rubbish ‘hotspots’.
Kairanga School held an Environmental Community Action Day which involved all the participating YRE students planning and running the event.
The students tidied the wetlands area by the school, built a worm farm, planted trees, fruits and vegetables and were shown how to plant clippings in used yogurt bottles. Students were also introduced to the concept of litter less lunches and educated about recycling and how to use scrap buckets in the school. The school conducted a Clean Up Event and created a mural highlighting the effect of litter on oceans.
On the day, students were encouraged to dress up in recyclable or environmentally friendly costumes for a chance to win badges and spot prizes donated by KNZB.
Students were invited to participate in a workshop at Reverse Garbage, a creative reuse centre that teaches alternative ways to reduce waste and creates change in the way resources are looked at. They were taught to turn waste into works of art. They created their own artwork through a process of experimentation with everyday discards.
Students also learnt innovative low-waste construction techniques (the workshop is tape-free and glue-free) and an understanding of material manipulation, experimentation and repetition. They developed problem-solving skills in art, design and visual realization.
Among the fantastic creations, there was a very effective one of a turtle entangled in net. Not only did it represent a very topical issue related to marine pollution we are facing currently, but the creation itself was made with the discarded items most present on our oceans, e.g. bottle tops, plastic straws, disposable cutlery and produce net mesh bags.
A campaign named "REDUCE" was launched in December in the Menéndez Pelayo Secondary School of Getafe (Madrid), in order to raise awareness in the educational community on the meaning and importance of reducing waste. The idea is to promote concrete actions on different ways to reduce waste.
On the Community Action Day, the teachers arrived at the center wearing yellow vests and chanting the slogan "This cannot continue like this". During the recess, they surprised everyone by playing music from the roof top. When the students looked at the roof, the professors displayed a large canvas with the slogan ‘REDUCE’. Students, teachers and families participated in identifying what should be improved in the schools.
Moreover, from the 22nd of November to the 7th of December, plastic garbage was gathered. A total of two bags of 100 litres of pressed “yellow” garbage was collected.
YRE AND ECO-SCHOOLS STUDENTS UNITED IN MALTA TO RAISE AWARENESS ON LITTER POLLUTION
In most cases, YRE and Eco-Schools join forces. As a committee, the Eco-Schools conduct the campaign and work to raise awareness. The reporters report on what the school is doing. The teachers often include the Litter Less Campaign in their language lessons, IT, Math and Environmental studies. Schools with media students are including the campaign in their routine work. Other schools opt to leave it as extra curricular, depending on the students.
One particular school invited a popular TV presenter in Malta to conduct a debate on litter. The students contributed in the investigation, research, and promotion phases. And the YRE students reported the event.
Another school worked closely with the local council to clean up the village and raise awareness through boards, adding more bins to the village and engaging with the local shop vendors. For Christmas, a giant Christmas tree was built out of plastic bottles.
Additionally, all schools participating in the campaign were invited to attend an informative session about litter and its consequences, followed by a turtle release - where 3 injured turtles were release back into the wild. After the workshops and the release, the students also participated in a clean up on the beach, with particular focus on micro-plastics
In Australia, the Litter Less Campaign was a success, and the students worked hard to produce good quality submissions. The highlight of the campaign certainly is the enthusiasm of the students and their admirable effort put into spreading the ever-important message that littering is never okay.
Through participating in this programme, the students have gained a deep understanding of the scope of a number of environmental issues and the consequences of human action at a local, national, and international scale
St Peter’s College has implemented many projects with a focus on sustainability this year. They changed the school bin system and then implemented a programme to inform the staff and students of how the new bin system worked. The school reduced waste to landfill by approx. 1.5 tonnes (Feb 2017 vs. Feb 2018).
Students produced a poster using the packaging and products sold by the school tuckshop to inform students as to the correct bin for each type of waste. The school also began the “Adopt-An-Area” programme where each house was given responsibility for a particular area of the school in the effort to keep the school rubbish free.
Students have also begun a project with the school Edmund Rice group. A raised vegetable bed was installed and worm farms purchased using a grant from Auckland Council. The vegetables grown will be donated to the Auckland City Mission.
Lastly, the school introduced a Golden Ticket promotion: In an attempt to get students to actually notice litter, “Golden Tickets” containing various prizes were hidden around the school at rubbish “hotspots”.
Gozo College Middle School started the Campaign with a clean-up in Gozo where students became more aware of the amounts of litter in the area. Articles about the clean-up were published in local newspapers (see e.g. Times of Malta) and students were invited on local TV programmes.
The school also focused on how to reduce waste by reusing materials for various items. The students in Year 7 and Year 8 brought used glass jars to be reused in school. These students were involved in making carob syrup and reused glass jars and other items for packaging during the school year. Hardly any new material was used for the whole project in packaging the products produced by the students themselves. Used wooden boxes from shops were used to hold jars in. The packaging was designed by the students themselves making use only of old/used materials.
The eco-school committee has teamed up with all year 7 students and through an entrepreneurship project worked on Green Business with the main aim being that of reducing litter. Recycled materials such as glass jars, milk cartons, tin lids, glass bottles and wood pellets were transformed into innovative useful products.
Last but not least, all students, teachers and school staff were given a free stainless steel travel cup to use instead of disposable cups, both for cold and hot drinks, therefore saving the production of disposable cups, as well as helping to reduce litter. The travel cups were sponsored by the Litter Less funds.
National Winners Workshop
The event announced the winners nationally and internationally. The winning videos were played and prizes were presented by Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful staff and a Wrigley Representative. The pupils then had a historical and environmental talk about the location of the event, Kilkeel Harbour, and everyone then completed a clean-up at the local beach.