Sparkways Carrum Downs embraces Plastic Free July for a more sustainable future
Children and educators from Victorian based early childhood service Sparkways Early Learning Carrum Downs will “choose to refuse” this July by joining the Plastic Free July movement, embracing a mindset of sustainability and mindfulness.
The service is one of a group of 45 Sparkways early learning services and head office staff members who will be turning down single use plastic this month, in a move they hope pays sustainable dividends for the planet.
“We see this as a great opportunity to accelerate and expand the sustainability program we already have,” Sparkways Carrum Downs centre director Meagan Black explained.
Ms Black suggested the proposal as a way of building on the service’s existing sustainability measures, describing Carrum Downs as a service which is “very aware of the impact on the environment.”
To kick off the month-long deep dive into sustainable practice, the early years’ service will be joining forces with the children to hone in on exactly what goes into the bins.
“We thought a bin audit would be a great way to accelerate what we’re already doing,” Ms Black explained.
“This will allow us to work with the children to put on a new lens and look really closely at what goes into our waste. We’re going to be looking at how we can we be proactive about whether the waste needs to be there in the first place.”
From easy swaps such as alternative food wraps and containers, learning more about keeping a vegetable garden and working with families about choosing sustainable lunchbox items, the team at Sparkways Carrum Downs are gearing up for some positive strides Forward during Plastic Free July.
As the children are surrounded by lots of discussion and thinking about the impact of their choices, their perspective is shifting, Ms Black continued.
“The more they hear us talk, the more it scaffolds their thinking. You can see the thought process – what am I doing, and what is the impact?”
“What I love about watching children is they absorb everything and then on-teach each other and their peers,” she added.
“You start seeing it come in to their play – the discussions around sustainability and what they are putting in the bin. It’s great hearing that fundamental question come from ones so young: ‘Could we do it a different way?’”
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