Pupils win green school of year award

by GreenWire.org.uk. Published Fri 27 Mar 2009 15:35
TV presenter Konnie Huq at the green awards

Eco-friendly youngsters have helped their school land the top prize in a competition to find the greenest in the country after petitioning their local shops to ban all plastic bags.

Pupils from Hellesdon High School in Norwich scooped the £20,000 first prize after developing their own ideas about how to recycle plastic bags and bottles by making bag holders out of them.

They also contacted businesses around the city to try to encourage them to stop using the planet-polluting bags after learning about the problems with the materials in their science and geography classes.

During out of school hours, the keen eco-group worked hard to make a difference so decided to enter their project in the county competition for energy company npower's Climate Cops Green SOS.

They won the regional heat and now they have won the national final and been given £20,000 to put towards another innovative environmentally friendly project.

Keenan Groom, 13, was among the group of 10 pupils and two teachers at the school that took part in the nationwide project. He said they were pleased but "speechless" to have taken first place.

He said: “We thought our school needed a change to become a bit greener because of all the issues with global warming and landfill sites getting larger, so we decided to stop using plastic bags and save the environment a bit more.”

The project impressed the panel of judges, including award ceremony presenter Fearne Cotton as well as Piers Morgan and eco activist Eugenie Harvey. The panel were impressed with the way the intrepid youngsters lobbied local shopkeepers to ban bags, with 23 out of 56 local stores committing to stopping the use of plastic in their stores.

Hellesdon was selected out of 10 shortlisted schools. Other top projects included runners up Penrice Community College, Cornwall, for their fight to make house numbers clearer to help the emergency services and reduce carbon emissions of delivery vans and the pupils of Gateways School in Leeds, who worked with the Women's Institute and the world's fastest speed knitter to make recycled fashion items.

Piers Morgan, head judge and champion of npower's Climate Cops campaign, said: "I've been impressed by the dedication to green issues demonstrated by each of the shortlisted schools. Their determination to mobilise their schoolmates, families and local communities is just the sort of green campaigning we need to make a difference to climate change."

Fearne Cotton, who met the children, all aged 11-13years, added: "These projects are proof that if we all pull together we can make a difference to the environment around us. It's the little things that count and I urge us all to think green! We're hoping that Hellesdon's success will inspire plenty more school years get involved with Green SOS 2009."

Npower's Climate Cops programme is part of the five year Brighter Futures initiative, designed to motivate eco-aware students to turn their passion for the environment into positive action.

Students inspired by Hellesdon's success can put themselves forward to take part in Green SOS 2009. Shortlisted schools will be given the training and skills needed to make their green mission fly, from selecting a cause, project management, team work and using the media.


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Comments about Pupils win green school of year award

WE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
raph, Norwich around 4 years, 7 months ago

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