Ka mihi ki a Ranginui, ki a Papatūānuku, ka mihi ki te ngao o te wheiao.
Enviroschools is a nationwide programme supported by Toimata Foundation, founding partner Te Mauri Tau, and a large network of regional partners. Early childhood centres and schools commit to a long-term sustainability journey, where tamariki/students connect with and explore the environment, then plan, design and take action in their local places in collaboration with their communities.
For more information, please see the Enviroschools website.
Enviroschools and TCAS
The Catlins Area School is one of 90 Enviroschools in the Otago region alone. We are proud to be an Enviroschool and are actively committed to long-term change, sustainability practices and action throughout the school community.
Read about some of the changes and projects The Catlins Area School has implemented:
Annual Owaka Litter Pick
The Annual Owaka Litter Pick is a school-wide event for our students to provide a service to the Owaka community. The plan is simple - remove as much rubbish from the township as possible, in one afternoon. The rubbish is then sorted, cleaned and recycled. As an added bonus, the House group who collects the most, wins points for their House!
Reusable Boxes for Friday Lunch
The Catlins Area School entered into a partnership last year with BakeHouse Takeaways in Owaka to supply a healthy Friday Lunch menu for our students. Instead of using 'throw-away' containers, students are encouraged to supply their own reusable container from home. Their boxes are collected on Thursday afternoon from the Student Centre and returned to them on Friday lunch time, filled with a healthy lunch.
At the beginning of Term 4 2019, we embarked on a journey to reduce our paper wastage by publishing our newsletter in a 100% digital format. In a year, we predict we'll save about 16,000 sheets of paper, 8 toner cartridges (not recyclable) and $6000. These funds can be redirected to support our students! Subscribe to our newsletter here: catlins.school.nz/subscribe
In addition to this, families now receive their child's reports by email - a further environmental improvement and a financial saving of approximately $200 in paper, envelopes and stamps.
Plastic Free Tuesday Campaign
During Term 3 of 2019, two students from Room 3 took their idea of introducing plastic-free lunches to their classmates:
Every Tuesday we want your children to bring a Plastic-Free lunch box because we are trying to reduce the amount of plastic we use in our everyday lives. So, instead of using a small yoghurt pottle you could buy a big one and get a little container that you can reuse and put the yoghurt in that. You could unwrap the muesli bar wrapper and just put it straight in the lunch box. What you could also do is get beeswax wraps to wrap your sandwiches or other food in it.
It’s been a good experiment doing and it’s good to reduce plastic in everyone’s lunch box, it looks really good.
B.J. Blair & Austin Morrison
The Catlins Area School have been working in partnership with Owaka Four Square to provide a borrow-a-bag service as part of our Enviroschools involvement. The idea behind the project was to provide the Four Square with a supply of TCAS-made reusable bags. The bags can be used by anyone who forgets to bring their bag and returned at their next shop. Students have constructed the bags from pre-cut pattern pieces. Single-use plastic bags have been outlawed in New Zealand since July 2019 and this project was a direct response to this legislation.
Clutha District Council kindly granted The Catlins Area School $325 to purchase a ‘Hungry Bin’ worm farm. The tiger worms in the bin process our biodegradable lunch waste into ‘tea’ for our plants. The waste from our apple cores, orange peels, bread crusts and more is collected into bins around the school before being fed to our worms. Once the worm 'tea' is made, it can then be used in our school vegetable patch.