Posted by: Holly on Nov 30, 2011
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From the 17th -20th of November we welcomed 22 young people to our second UK Active Citizenship Residential! Plantsbrook School from Sutton Coldfield, Sidney Stringer Academy from Coventry and St Chad’s High School from Runcorn joined us to explore environmental issues in their community and build the skills they need to run a successful campaign to create change!
Together we discovered the problems and opportunities presented by climate change and looked at the many different ways we impact on the environment. Each school mapped their local area looking for ways that their community could reduce its impac - take a look at Holly presenting Plantsbrook Schools map here.
In Sutton Coldfield Plantsbrook School's campaign is going to focus on reducing the litter found in a stream near their school. They want to run a clean-up operation, raise awareness about the issues of reducing waste and increasing recycling and they hope to get the whole community involved through their local primary schools. The students identified that the town centre already has some great bins which help people to separate their waste and they hope to introduce something similar in the school. The students are concerned about their future – they want you to get behind their campaign and padlock the future! Hear what Mrs Wigley has to say about the impact on her students who attended the residential!
For the St Chad’s EcoManiacs their concerns focused on the river Mersey which flows through the middle of their town. During the 1980’s the river Mersey was condemned as one of the most polluted rivers in Europe with reports that fish could no longer survive in its waters – it was also joked that those that fell in the river wouldn’t drown, they would be poisoned first! The Mersey is now at its cleanest with all types of wildlife returning to it waters – just this week the BBC reported that otters have returned to the once uninhabitable river! St Chad’s want it to stay this way so they want to keep up peoples awareness about the importance of keeping the Mersey clean for future generations! An additional concern the students had was about the school’s carbon footprint – they have been identified as the worst school in the area and they want this to change so they are looking at ways to get the whole school involved in carbon cutting initiative through passing it on and spreading the word!
The Sidney Stringer Academy CyclePaths have big ambitions to get as many of their fellow students cycling to school as possible! They want to hold a competition in the school to get people involved with the winning student receiving a brand new bike! The team are looking at lots of different creative ways to raise of awareness of their campaign from both within the school and through the local media – they already have plans to get their head teacher on side when they present their campaign! Find out more from Mr Hicks and how he will take campaigning back to his school
Highlights of the weekend included lots of team building activities, a debate between Italy and Germany over the dumping of waste in the Rhine and creating a video to exchange with the Dutch Active Citizenship Residential team!