Today I sent out email to a few schools (Bullcreek PS, Oberthur PS, Bateman PS, Caralee CS, FLDC, Melville PS, Bicton PS, Attadale PS, Ardross PS, Applecross SHS, Mount Pleasant PS, Brentwood PS, Leeming SHS, West Leeming PS, Leeming PS, Banksia Park PS, Kardinya PS, Palmyra PS, Booragoon PS, Melville SHS, Winthrop PS, Yidarra CPS, Kennedy BC, All Saints C, Corpus Christi C, Mel Maria CPS, Our Lady of Fatima, Santa Maria, St Benedicts and St Georges Anglican Grammar!) Basically, I think schools are a great place to start when it comes to reaching a group of people and … educating them.
The gist of the email is as follows…
I am requesting the schools of the City of Melville to participate in a free program to promote recycling waste streams that would normally end up in landfill.
Some of the items that are not recycled through City of Melville is the humble toothbrush and tube of Toothpaste. TerraCycle take on the waste streams that our curb side collectors can’t. They will even pay postage and give your school points for each piece over 1kg (up to 22kg/package). All you have to do is bring in your brush (and other dental hygiene products.)
Run it through the Student Council, giving the student body ownership and an ingrained school ethic to care for the environment! Advertise it on your school website, in class rooms and the school newsletter. Or perhaps via the P&C. Put your school and Melville area on the Map for public drop locations, currently there are none south of the Swan River.
Not only will you be helping keeping toothbrushes out of landfill, you will be stopping them from contaminating glass in the City of Melville yellow bins (yes, glass.)
Please read the TerraCycle link and challenge your students to be part of keeping plastic out of landfill. As mentioned postage is pre-paid by TerraCycle, the program is free and you get points that make prizes for your school.
Take it a step further and do the beauty packaging waste stream. TerraCycle have several different waste streams and quite a few are free! Some of their programs do involve a cost, I’d be thrilled if you took them up but I’d be happy with just getting toothbrushes out of landfill. Should your school wish to purchase some of the TerraCycle bins that are not on their free list, fundraise with a mufti-day for a gold coin donation. Have the students and teachers wear all natural fibres (or TRY to.) Natural fibres include cotton, bamboo, wool, silk & hemp.
I read on OralB Australia’s website that they recommend changing toothbrush every three months. Multiply that by your students and their family members and that is a lot of waste reduction!
I am a resident in the City of Melville, I have no affiliation with the companies mentioned. I’m just a mum, with young children in a local school who wants to make a difference in more then just my catchment area. My personal motivation is to have less waste, my inspiration has come from reading about Australian, Erin Rhoads www.therogueginger.com and Beth Terry https://myplasticfreelife.com. Beth Terry has a great book called Plastic Free, which would be an amazing addition to your school library. Although it has an American focus, it is a very good starting point for anyone wishing to minimise their plastic footprint. She also refers to many Australian programs. Other books for your school may be Joel Harper, All the way to the Ocean and Patricia Newma’s, Plastic Ahoy! These are aimed at younger readers, best suited for primary school children.
The City of Melville has an A-Z list of items that go in their ‘Green top bins’ (aka Organic Compost and Landfill) and ‘yellow top bins’, recycling. RecycleRight have a free app for smartphones to help clarify what is rubbish and what is recycling. RecycleRight do have free tours if your school was interested in investigating the impact of of recycling and rubbish and how our systems work in the Melville Shire.
If your school participates I’d love to know! If you win the prize from TerraCycle I really want to know! I’d love to see your school become a Pin Drop on the Oral Care Recycling map (pictured.)
Please inspire change and awareness.
Thank you for reading.
- This program isn’t to undermine the work that the City of Melville & RecycleRight do, it is intended to complement it. Please download their app and/or take their free tour!
- Electric toothbrushes, electric toothbrush replacement heads & floss-string are landfill. Bamboo toothbrushes are to go into home compost.
The Kittens Mum
This post has been edited to make it easier to read. The content is effectively the same. TKM