Every Friday, upwards of 20 Craigflower elementary students don their emerald-coloured T-shirts and transform into the Green Team – an environmentally conscious group that focuses their attention on recycling, composting and healthy living.
Parents, staff members and the neighbouring community all recognize the great efforts of the students, which earned the kids an environmental award from the municipality.
“I’m so impressed with the enthusiasm of the children. Just seeing how interested and involved the students are, you can’t help get excited and really want to keep that message going,” principal Cammy Coughlin said.
Every Friday, the Green Team participates in morning announcements, sharing facts and advice with their schoolmates on living greener. They also actively remind fellow students on how to best dispose of waste from lunches.
Coun. Vicki Sanders, who chairs Saanich’s environmental committee, says she’s proud to see so many young people helping take care of the environment.
“Craigflower school has gone beyond recycling and composting, which is prevalent in most schools,” she said. “They are teaching the students at a young age that doing small things like picking up garbage enables them to help the greater community.”
Also being honoured for helping the community are Jim Moores and Paul Bishop, who make up the Friends of Cedar Hill Park.
The pair frequents Cedar Hill Golf Course and the surrounding area to remove invasive plants like blackberry and ivy.
“I don’t know whether people actually notice (the removal of these plants) because it comes back so quick,” Bishop, 64, said. “But when we’re working around the park, we hear people talk about what’s there. I think they appreciate the beauty of the native plants.”
Sanders said of the pair: “(They) symbolize the countless unsung heroes who work tirelessly behind the scenes for the betterment of Saanich’s natural environment.”
The 2011 environmental awards will be handed out on Tuesday (June 14) at 7:30 p.m. at Saanich municipal hall (770 Vernon Ave.).
• Jim Moores and Paul Bishop, individual citizen award
• Friends of Knockan Hill Park Society, volunteer organization award
• Clean Air Landscaping, business/commercial award
• Craigflower elementary school, youth group/school award
• Ray and Judy Galey, biodiversity conservation award
• Robin Tunnicliffe, sustainability award
• John Jungen, long-term achievement award