Recycled school books a winner
Recycling unused school books into new ones has earned a group of teens a $2000 paycheque.
Team Gyropad won the social enterprise competition Kickstart Challenge, organised by student-led group Social Innovation.
Epsom teens Hailie Xie, David Zheng and Andrew Qi worked with Pakuranga’s Aditya Arolkar and Albany’s Louisa Wang on the Kickstart project.
University students Hayley Yu, of Mt Roskill, and Remuera’s Kate McCormack mentored the five high school students during the two-month project.
Gyropad members reflected on their own experiences of high school to find smaller problems they could solve. They then surveyed 10 primary schools and five high schools and found many people do not know what happens to used school books.
Hailie says the group decided to recycle the unused or incomplete work books into new ones.
‘‘People had a lot of books, exercise or notebooks, that they didn’t really use, maybe it was only half used or they only used a few pages.
‘‘They couldn’t really reuse the books the next year . . . so we really wanted to solve this problem of really huge paper wastage.
‘‘Right now there is a growing interest towards environmental sustainability,’’ Hailie says.
‘‘We thought that this would be a really good way of providing some hands-on experience for primary school students to participate and really see what happens to the paper when it gets recycled and what they can do.’’
After the competition, they presented their business case to a panel of social enterprise groups, members of the business community and the Auckland Council.
They were awarded $2000 out of a $3000 prize pool which will cover the cost of taking their recycling workshops to Auckland primary schools.
High school students will host the workshops and teach primary pupils about recycling processes and environmental sustainability.
Big win: Team Gyropad wins funding, from left: Hayley Yu, Aditya Arolkar, Hailie Xie, David Zheng, Louisa Wang, Andrew Qi and Kate McCormack.
Go to centralleader.co.nz and click Latest Edition to hear more about recycling paper.