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ON A MERCY MISSION By Shawn Brack, HPE Teacher/Sports Coordinator, St. Joseph’s School

Monday, September 16, 2019 10:51 AM | Lesley Van Staveren (Administrator)

St Joseph’s Primary School is on a mission to reduce waste and help the environment by recycling as much packaging and other items, as possible.

With the help of their mascot, Mercy, the children and staff are striving to separate recyclable, compostable and general waste, as well as plastic bottle caps to contribute to the betterment of our planet. This also instils a sense of responsibility in students from a young age.

The school has its own environmental committee whose members keep track of what rubbish is put in which bin. Through a series of creative videos featuring Mercy the cow, children are educated through demonstrations to ensure items are recycled or thrown away correctly.

As well as lunchtime waste there is also a cardboard recycling cage and collection point for used batteries which then get delivered to the Cairns City Library for proper disposal.

The scraps from the classes’ fruit breaks are collected then deposited into compost bins which were generously donated to the school by Frankland Island Cruises and the Power family. The compost from the bins is then used to nourish the school’s vegetable gardens. The Kitchen Garden program is sponsored by Piccones IGA.

Plastic bottle caps are also collected which are an overlooked waste product and are fully recyclable. Through Rotary Club of Cairns Sunrise, Envision Employment Services is using the plastic bottle caps for their filament to make mobility aids, disability aids, STEM training tools and aged care gadgets. Envision Hands has successfully taken this plastic and extruded it to create functioning filament to 3D print all the components to make up a hand! Envision is also working on a variety of products at various sites including outdoor tiles, portable disability ramps and slug traps.

St Joseph’s…striving to be GAME CHANGERS!


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