The students in Dunsmuir middle school’s life skills class could barely keep still with excitement as they received a cheque for $1,000 on Tuesday for their hardworking recycling efforts.
The Return-It program tracks how many bottles and cans each school recycles and awards first, second and third prizes for small, medium and large-sized schools.
This year, Dunsmuir won top spot in the middle category for a second time.
Encorp, the parent recycling company, hands out the awards after the school year ends and Island schools get an extra bonus.
“The Island actually does a fantastic job of recycling,” said Kelly Gorman, operations manager for the Bottle Depot.
“So we decided that any school that won here, we would match what they won.”
Gorman was on hand to present the cheque to the Colwood school’s life skills class on Tuesday. “It’s great to come back,” she said with a smile.
With their previous award, the life skills class purchased three sturdy recycling bins for the school, as well as gloves and supplies for the kids who volunteer to sort through cans and piles of paper.
“This year we’re hoping to set up a greenhouse to teach the kids how to grow some of their own food,” said Erin Larson, one of the life skills teachers. The vegetables grown could then be used in their foods class, she added, where the students learn how to prepare healthy, balanced meals.
“We also do a big shop for the local food bank every Christmas.”
The class will also likely purchase one more recycling bin for the school in their ongoing efforts to make being green as easy as ABC.