Teacher tackling litter bugs early
School takes up the challenge to protect environment
TIRED of seeing our beautiful town marred by piles of litter, a Bundaberg teacher has decided to tackle the problem head on.
Trish Garrard has become a Litter Ambassador for the Bin It – You Know It’s Right! initiative, which aims to stamp out litter bugs.
The St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School teacher said children could be influenced to take positive action.
“At school we encourage students to think about food packaging and the amount of rubbish created just in one lunchtime at school,” she said.
Each year students audit one bin after lunch.
“The students separate the rubbish into categories and are always amazed at how much food wrappers and empty drink containers contribute to landfill.”
Year 4 student Hamish Haase completed the audit with his classmates and said he noticed litter along the roadside on his daily commute to school.
“I don’t understand why people would throw rubbish out their car window or leave it behind when they have a picnic at the beach,” he said.
“When I have a snack in the car I just wrap up what’s left and keep it next to me until we get to a bin. It just isn’t a problem.”
Hamish said he was aware how litter could travel through the landscape and its impacts on the environment.
“Litter looks messy and can choke or entangle animals,” he said.
“Some litter, like broken bottles, can even damage cars or injure people, and it’s hard to clean up.”
Mrs Garrad said involvement in the Reef Guardian Schools program had a positive effect on young people as they made the connection between food packaging and reef health.
“Litter moves through our waterways and drainage systems and eventually it is deposited into the ocean where it can have catastrophic impacts on the environment and marine life, such as turtles,” she said.
“At school we have a garden where we grow veggies that are used in the tuckshop and we have ‘munch and crunch’ time at first break where the students are encouraged to eat fruit and vegetables that are brought to school with no wrappers.
“The students collect organic waste at lunchtime for our compost and learn the importance of reducing the amount of rubbish that leaves the school each week.
“Takeaway foods from towns and roadhouses are so convenient when travelling by car however the associated packaging has no place on the roadside.
“If foods are consumed while driving along, simply bundle up the rubbish and keep it in the car until you reach home or the next convenient place to dispose of it correctly. It doesn’t take much to plan ahead to make sure you Bin It!”
For more information, visit www.binit.org.au
We encourage students to think about food packaging and the amount of rubbish created just in one lunchtime at
— Trish Garrard
BAN LITTER: Year 4 student Hamish Haase and teacher Trish Garrad take litter seriously at their school.