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DP 1 Service Reflection

End of DP 1 Service Reflection

Recycling and Sustainability

2018-19 was my 1st year of DP in “Recycling and Sustainability” service group which consisted of 12 students this year. This year our service group was active in fields other than the collection and drop offs of recyclable waste from the Overseas School of Colombo. Going around the school campus and collecting recyclable waste, such as paper and cardboard, was our regular duty on Thursday after school however this year we pushed our limits under the same service time condition of 1 hour and were able to work on other projects. This year in Recycling and Sustainability service I was focused on demonstrating my engagement with issues of global significance and challenges which have been undertaken.

We began the year by regularly updating the notice board with articles and pictures for spreading awareness, then during our service lessons we were able to custom design recycling boxes for particular classes in the school campus, such as creating a chemical theme for the chemistry room. These were some challenges being taken for spreading awareness about waste management through artwork and articles. One of our reasons for designing recycling boxes was to make it attractive and different than other bins so people will feel more inclined to recycle paper in the correct bin and not through other waste in the recycling box.

                       Decorating recycling boxes. Taken by Mr. Lockwood

Afterwards another highlight of Recycling and Sustainability  this year was the creation of the 1st t-shirt of Recycling and Sustainability service group. The plan of creating a t-shirt was thought in my sophomore year but was executed in DP 1 where I began the designing with Devin and in semester 2 we printed 30 t-shirts which were sold on the campus. The t-shirt had a message of ‘reuse, recycle, and reduce’ with an ecological footprint symbol which was to raise awareness about waste. In this process I was engaged with demonstrating global issue because I had to create a logo for our service which represents the issue ecological footprints and it was also challenging because I had to bring up a broad message in a limited space on the t-shirt. Besides this I also had to look for the attractiveness of the t-shirt because too much text, image, or color could ruin its attractiveness to the public. But finally at the end of semester 1 I finalized the designed and confirmed with the service leader and during early semester 2 we got our printed t-shirts. These t-shirts were sold on environment day along with distributing among the staff members. Link can be found here.

Our service leader with the service t-shirt
Taken by the author

This year was also a next step for Recycling and Sustainability service group as our service established a biogas plant, an idea of Disara from her personal project in 10th grade, behind the science rooms where all food waste can be reused as a byproduct of reusable gas which will be used as a fuel in the kitchen. Biogas plant had an effect on our school such that it reduced a significant the amount of waste produced per day which was from food. This year was a trial year for the biogas and I think it ran quite efficiently and next year it will be ready to convert food waste as gas to be used in the kitchen.

The year ended by The Overseas School of Colombo hosting environment day which was held by the Reef Keepers and Recycling and Sustainability service groups. For environment day the Recycling and Sustainability service group created a skit for spreading awareness on our school campus. A challenge was taken of how to plan the skit which will lead us to spread a message of waste awareness. After brainstorming many ideas we thought of doing a skit on how students at the school campus treat waste and how it should be done to reduce ecological footprint. This will allow students to connect the skit to themselves, make it humorous so it will be remembered, and to allow them to take a message about the importance separating waste on the school campus. In our skit we had some member of the service on the stage throwing waste all over the place and one member sorting the mess in the correct bins and giving a talk about the importance of waste separation and the effect on the environment. On this day our service recognized some staff members for their hard work towards waste separation by giving them the t-shirts we designed and it was the day when we sold our Recycling and Sustainability t-shirts. This showed the engagement with issues of  global significance as I was in part with developing the skit of spreading awareness of waste. Link can be found here.

                                       Recycling and Sustainability skit.
                                                  Taken by Mr. Lockwood

In conclusion this year in Recycling and Sustainability service we were able to work beyond our limits and accomplish many tasks which lead us to spread awareness about waste management on our school campus. I was able to learn about a new machine, known as the biogas, which our service provided this year and it was a great experience learning how a portable machine on the school premises can be used for reducing waste. I think this year Recycling and Sustainability service group was able to accomplish more than I thought. The approaches we took this year were to spread awareness of waste management and these approaches might be “a small step for a man, but a giant step for mankind – Neil Armstrong” in reducing the ecological footprint. Next year I’m looking forward for some new approaches in spreading awareness in our school committees.



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