News from our Sustainability Groups
HealthWise is dedicated to improving the health and sustainability of our school and community. We are excited to implement and maintain initiatives aimed at increasing motivation, promoting health and developing healthy cooking skills. However, before this, our panel felt it was important to reflect and acknowledge the wonderful things the Springs community already has. From this ideal “Springs Appreciation Day” is born. Later this term Western Springs College students and staff will be invited to put their creative skills into action, creating a card or creative message expressing their appreciation for someone at our school. HealthWise will then deliver them throughout the week to the appreciated students during form time. Although our focus is the appreciation of the wonderful and kind people in our lives we also will take the day to appreciate our own health and the
beautiful environment we are fortunate enough to life in.
Sea Cleaners Trip with Waste Wise
On Monday 20th June, a bunch of the wastewise crew took the amazing opportunity to help clean up the Hauraki Gulf with the organisation Sea Cleaners. Since 2002 Sea Cleaners have collected over 3.2 million litres of rubbish from the harbour which is the equivalent of 135 shipping containers full of trash. Experiencing the clean up for a second time allowed me to see the extend of Auckland’s rubbish problem. It is a never ending cycle and we are the main problem. To start towards a cleaner, greener future it has to start with small things such as picking up rubbish off the streets and making sure we do not litter ourselves. Both these trips have shifted my perspectives on rubbish on the streets because seeing the effects it has on sealife and beautiful spaces causes me to not be able to walk past litter without feeling a sense of guilt because I put myself before the sea life this
rubbish affects. If you ever feel like giving back to the natural environment, experiencing a clean up, or becoming a regular volunteer, Sea Cleaners is an amazing organisation that will benefit you in many ways.
As a member fairly new to Waste Wise I was so unbelievably lucky to have this opportunity to go on the sea cleaners boat and experience the pollution of our harbour and Hauraki Gulf in person. The amount of rubbish blew me away. Beaches tucked away out of sight and out of mind were just covered in rubbish. Beaches I never knew existed right on the waterfront of the CBD were trashed. So much rubbish had washed up on the shore coming from storm water drains, overfilled public bins and even just rubbish dumped on the street by people who could never imagine it would end up in the ocean. It disgusted me how much we saw yet made me feel so good about myself as we were making a difference, as small as it was, picking up this trash. Seeing the beach go from plastic everywhere to almost pristine is honestly incredibly satisfying as it represents the improvement we made to the harbour as a
whole. And not only did we do this for one beach but many which made the experience all the more better. After that day I couldn't understand why more people didn't take this opportunity to participate in the sea cleaners operation to make a difference to our harbour whose water we swim in and fish we eat as not only does it create a positive impact but is also eye opening to how much plastic is out there which cause reflection as to how much plastic we go through on a daily bases. I can almost be certain that if every aucklander went around on the sea cleaners boat for one day, the amount of plastic seen in the harbour would decrease hugely as anyone with an ounce of respect for the environment would be able to see the damage plastic is doing to our environment and thus create a change in the lifestyle of these people. Anyone can volunteer by contacting sea cleaners on their website or
Facebook page and it is one of the most worthwhile experiences you could ever do.
We have also recently been working on making a set of planter boxes to put around our school. Last term we went on a trip to the Waitakere Resource Centre where we collected materials such as wheelbarrows and sinks to turn into planter boxes. We brought these materials back, sanded and cleaned them as well as painted them with recycled paint we bought from the centre. We have also just recently received funding from the Parent Action Group which means that we were able to purchase plants for the boxes as well as tools for upkeep and a shed to store it all in! As well as the funding we have also been able to get free bags of compost from Kings Plant Barn through their generous donations scheme which gives torn bags to schools and community groups. With this added help we have finally been able to put our planter boxes out around the school and couldn’t be more proud of all
the work we have done.
The aim of these planter boxes is to show students how items that may be considered trash can have a second life if you take time to consider how to reuse them. They are also designed to brighten up the school as well as hopefully have some edible gardens that can be used by the food tech rooms /teachers /students. We have worked hard on these and hope they will be a success! We are going to keep putting these boxes around the school in the coming weeks so keep an eye out and remember to respect them so we can allow the plants to grow and flourish!
“The planting of these of boxes was satisfactory and fun as they are educating the students of Western Springs College about the beauty old items of no significance can hold” Grace
“This experience has been so fun and rewarding because most of the planter boxes are now placed around the school, and look amazing” Khushee