More than 1 000 tonnes of waste has dodged the dumpsites this year thanks to the Schools Recycling Programme of Coca-Cola Beverages SA (CCBSA) – a landfill-saving of 300 tonnes more than was collected by participating schools in 2016.
Along the way, schoolchildren created everything from skipping ropes, abacus counters, backpacks and stationery holders to musical instruments – all from junk.
Guests at Schools Recycling Awards ceremony at The Sheds in Alexander Street, Johannesburg CBD were treated to a musical performance on a violin made of tin, while a living plant wall made from recycled polyethylene terephthalate (Pet) adorned the venue.
Fewer than 600 schools took part, involving half a million schoolchildren, in an initiative that earns revenue for the schools while instilling the values of environmental stewardship in the youngsters who, in turn, spread the message at home and in their communities.
“Our ideal is to nurture a generation of environmental champions to create a permanent shift in the way we deal with waste as a society,” said CCBSA MD, Velaphi Ratshefola during his address at the awards.
In the primary school competition, the first prize of R50 000 went to Ekuthuleni Primary School, KwaMashu in Durban, the 2nd prize of R30 000 to Siphosethu Primary School, also from KwaMashu, Durban and third prize of R20 000 to Motjibosane Primary School from Hammanskraal.
In the high school competition, the first prize of R50 000 went to Motherwell High School in Port Elizabeth, the 2nd prize of R30 000 to VM Kwinana Secondary School, Port Elizabeth and third prize of R20 000 to Tlhatlogang Secondary School in Mofolo, Soweto.
All the prize money will be used to upgrade the schools’ infrastructure, meaning the schools recycling class of 2017 have left a lasting legacy for future generations to enjoy.