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Royal Oak - 2013

Team Name: The Waste Warriors

Team Type: Class

Campaign Goal:

A timely situation occurred at the formation of the current year’s Environment Club wherein our school had run out of paper towels. As this is, at times, a reoccurring problem the students became motivated to take on the challenge of devising and implementing a strategy to reduce paper towel usage in our school and to support this year’s focus of waste reduction. The students began their investigation with a visual survey of the school, noting how paper towels were excessively used by staff and students. To provide background information on the quantity of paper towels used in the school the school custodian attended one of our initial meetings and filled the group in on his ordering process, including frequency of ordering and quantity. It was calculated that our school used approximately 5,000 paper towels per week. During a brainstorming session of the environment group it was decided that our goal would be to reduce the quantity of paper towels used in our school from 5,000 per week to 2,700 per week.




What did we do?

  • We wanted students and staff to self-regulate their paper towel usage and to support others in this endeavour.
  • Success was be measured through discussions and meetings with the school custodian who has the responsibility of ordering the school’s supply of paper towels.
  • Visual surveys of the amount of paper towels in garbage cans throughout the school will also provide a loose measurement.
  • Through multiple announcements, numerous posters (created on re-used paper), creating and performing a rap entitled “Just Take One!” to the entire school, and the strong support and dedication of the “Waste Warriors” our campaign was promoted and thrived.


The Best Part

The best part of the campaign was the enthusiasm and dedication with which the students approached the development, implementation and the taking on of their personal responsibility to reduce the quantity of paper towels the school used.


Advice

Devise a means to foster a sense of personal responsibility to achieve the goal is key. It was found that when students discovered they had a voice in the outcome of this campaign they were they were that much further motivated to see a successful outcome.


Did We Reach our Goal?

The “Waste Warriors” of Royal Oak School were successful in promoting and achieving the goal of our campaign (“Just Take One!”), that of reducing the amount of paper towels used per person and thus the total usage of the school. Results were monitored and calculated through discussions with our school’s Facility Operator who is responsible for ordering paper towels. It was also noted that the quantity of paper towels in garbage receptacles has been reduced.


What we are most proud of

The energy and responsibility with which the students displayed during the campaign was especially rewarding to witness.


What we are planning to work on next

Maintaining the positive results achieved by the Environment Club at Royal Oak School in their efforts to reduce energy and water consumption as well as waste reduction.