Going Green at the DSK
In 2018, the DSK put a major focus on Going Green, in an effort to expand our eco-friendly school environment as well as to reduce the school’s and community’s global footprint. Our mission is to assist, guide and encourage all members of the DSK school community to actively care for and enhance our environment.
We started our movement by re-implementing and creating awareness around our recycling system, reducing our landfill by almost half. Our cafeteria and tuck shop has banned plastic wrapping, only using recyclable containers and bags. Furthermore, all our organic food waste is used to create organic fertiliser by means of Bokashi recycling.
One of our big successes in 2018 was to ban the plastic bag from our school in order to create awareness around our waste production.
In time for International Plastic-free July, creatively designed cotton bags were given out to all learners and staff members and a “Plastic bag free EXPO” was organized around the topic of plastic pollution and finding possible solutions to this problem.
A second big success was to sign the DSK up to become an international Eco-School with WESSA, a programme of the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). The programme is active in almost 70 countries and supports environmental learning in and outside of the classroom. We saw this as an amazing opportunity for us as a school to become even “greener” and to create awareness and action around social and environmental sustainability with a holistic approach. In order to receive the Bronze award in 2018, we had to implement a 7-step action plan around one of 11 themes to choose from. We chose the theme “Waste”, as this fit in perfectly with our projects and actions this year. Our action plan was submitted at the end of the school year and the DSK was awarded the first international Eco School award!
We focussed on green school grounds by re-growing the school vegetable garden, implementing vertical gardens as well as planting more water-wise indigenous plants. We have several composting systems in the garden, such as a worm farm, a bokashi bin and a compost heap, exposing the learners to different ways of handling organic waste. The produced fertiliser is used on our vegetables.
Throughout the year, Going Green has continuously promoted environmental education by inviting inspirational public speakers, environmentalists and film directors to speak to the learners about their fascinating stories and incredible journeys relating to their commitment to sustainability. We can proudly say that the learners as well as staff members of our school are becoming eco-warriors, refusing single-use plastic items wherever possible and spreading the word to their families and community members. To continue the work, the DSK is planning to launch reusable lunch boxes as well as coffee/tea mugs in the near future.