Eco Week 2019

This year, Withington’s Eco Society have been working hard to make our School even more sustainable and environmentally conscious. The group, from Years 7 to 13, organised and ran their second annual Eco Week at the start of this term and encouraged all students to get involved in some way or another.

FUNDRAISING

British nature is struggling, and a report published this year likened the impact of biodiversity loss to that of climate change. Shifts in land use and farming practices have made it difficult for many birds, insects and mammals to thrive, and modern gardens offer little refuge. The EcoSoc group chose, therefore, to focus their 2019 fundraising on wildlife charities and their face painting and jelly snake sales raised £236, which will be split between Withington Hedgehog Care Trust and Rewilding Britain.

CHANGING HABITS

The group realised that it was important to not only raise money, but also change habits. We can all be a little more sustainable if we have the right inspiration. The Eco Alternatives Stall returned for a second year, offering environmentally friendly alternatives to everyday products. The Catering Department ditched single-use plastics for the week, and we all enjoyed Meat-free Monday to reduce our carbon footprint. Eco Society also launched the first-ever Eco House Competition, with students logging their sustainable journeys for house points. Scott was the eventual winner, with the most students walking, cycling, car-sharing or taking public transport to School.

REDUCING WASTE

It’s hard to avoid plastics nowadays, and even harder to avoid landfilling most of it once it has served its purpose. The girls ran several Eco-Bricking workshops throughout the week, turning plastic waste into building materials for long-lasting outdoor furniture. They also re-purposed wastepaper into origami cranes which will form an art installation for all to enjoy. The week was a huge success and it is really heartening to see how many people at Withington are leading the way in sustainability. All the strands of Eco Week were organised and driven by our Sixth Form Eco prefects, supported by our fantastic teachers, Mrs Cotton, Mrs Howling and Dr Kenny. Well done and thank you to them all.

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