Another year of camping trips at View Royal elementary will be funded through bottle returns — a fundraising trend spreading across Greater Victoria thanks to a recycling stewardship program.
Local schools have earned provincial honours — and cash — by recycling 472,262 beverage containers in 2010-11.
Encorp Pacific’s B.C. Recycling Program allows schools to keep 100 per cent of the bottle deposits, in addition to awarding cash prizes for the schools that returned the most bottles based on their size.
With 100,103 containers returned and $7,112 in deposit refunds, View Royal beat out all other B.C. elementary schools with between 151 and 300 students. The award came with $750 in prize money from Encorp.
View Royal has historically used earnings from bottle drives to fund Grade 5 camping trips as well as any resources needed by its parent advisory council.
“It’s a win-win situation,” said principal Rob Parker. “I’m very proud of the students and parents and staff who worked so hard on the program last year. It’s pretty amazing to be named No. 1 and we’re excited to receive the award.”
Glanford middle school collected 78,850 containers worth $6,051.05 in deposits, landing them a third place prize of $250 for a secondary school with 200 to 500 students.
“It’s encouraging kids to recycle from a younger age,” said Manny Sahota, program co-ordinator for Encorp Pacific. “What we’re noticing is when they get into high school, the kids are conditioned, or they have it ingrained in them, that they should be recycling at schools and when they’re out and about.”
Honourable mentions went to Cedar Hill, Dunsmuir, Spencer and Colquitz middle schools, as well as Colwood, Craigflower, Happy Valley, Ruth King and Strawberry Vale elementary schools. Spectrum community school also earned an honourable mention, as did Lakeview Christian and St. Margaret’s schools.
Collectively, those schools returned 244,133 beverage containers.
Since the federally-funded program began in 2000, 37 million containers have been refunded for more than $2.2 million.
This year, prizes have increased to $1,000, $750 and $500.