On the 28th of February, a group of Clonard girls volunteered their time to clean up the area around our community and the school. It was surprising how much rubbish was left on the ground. People don’t realize how much this affects our planet.

Throughout this day we worked for around two hours to clean up our school as a part of Clean up Australia Day. The students and teachers walked along a track picking up lots of rubbish that was found in many peculiar places, such as bushes and around park benches. A group of students stayed back to help clean up the school and the amount of rubbish found was astonishing.

Together, the group managed to collect twelve kilograms of general waste and recyclable material and four kilograms of compostable food items. Altogether the girls collected sixteen kilograms from inside Clonard and the general vicinity. Although we collected several different types of rubbish, quite a lot of the waste was made up of lollypop sticks, cigarette butts, bottle caps, and gum wrappers.

After going through this process we learnt that putting rubbish in the incorrect bin is almost as bad as leaving it on the ground. We were shown that if one piece of non-recyclable waste is put in the recyclable bin, the whole bin of recyclables will be taken to landfill. It is also a common misconception that all pieces of paper can be recycled, but any paper or cardboard with stains must go in the rubbish bin.

Although we were able to make our world a little cleaner, it is important to always be aware of where our rubbish goes. In the recycling bin, there should only be clean paper/cardboard, most hard plastics, clear glass, aluminium foils and additional materials. In our BioPak bin, there should be nothing but food scraps and BioPak containers. Although the majority of our items can go into the rubbish bin it is always good to check whether it can go in an alternative bin first.

Remember to keep our world clean!

Taylor Nicholas, Ella Jarred, Alice Taylor and Cassiana Marcu; Students of Year 9