Recycle forum leans on schools to drive recycle message home
The outstanding success of the annual Schools Recycling Competition received special mention last week at the Annual General Meeting of the Recycle Namibia Forum.
The forum is an industry initiative, driven with the support of the Ohlthaver & List Group, to create awareness for the benefits of recycling, at both commercial and household level. The recycling competition for schools takes this message to the generation still at school through their participation.
This year, the Dagbreek School for the Intellectually Impaired won this competition for the second time in a row, by substantially increasing the waste recycled on the school’s premises. The announcement was made at the end of March this year.
At the prize-giving ceremony, the forum’s coordinator, Anita Witt handed the trophy to the Dagbreek principal, Paul du Plessis. The occasion was witnessed by Venessa Mwiya, the O&L Group’s Corporate Social Investment coordinator together with the learners who participated in the competition.
Emphasising the contribution of the schools competition, Witt said at last week’s AGM “2016 has been an exceptionally busy and fruitful year for the Recycle Namibia Forum. One of the forum’s most celebrated results is the increase in membership.” The exposure the forum enjoys from initiatives such as the schools competition helps to create awareness for its activities which draws in more members, specifically corporate members.
“It is satisfying to see the continued growth in membership, which results in more networking opportunities, and contributes immensely to a greater platform for the forum to function effectively in its purpose” added Witt.
The forum celebrated the significant increase in the number of participants in the schools competition. For this year, it is envisaged that about 50 schools will participate.
Stated Witt “The interest of schools to participate and of course the performance of the participating schools has been overwhelming and very inspiring. The Schools Recycling Competition has grown to become one of the most encouraging tools for recycling in the country.”
Recycle Namibia Forum membership increased from ten full members and two associate members in 2014 to eighteen full members and nine associate members in 2016. In 2017, another two associate members have joined the forum.
At the AGM, forum chairperson, Gloudi de Beer said one of the most important projects in which the forum is currently involved, is the dedicated Beverage Container Working Group. “This group has representatives from various organizations involved in the manufacturing and use of beverage containers and our main focus is to identify alternatives to the proposed levy on various beverage containers, without losing sight of the need to reduce environmental litter.
Beverage containers, i.e, glass and plastic bottles form the bulk of the waste recycled every year by the participating schools in the Schools Recycling Competition.
Exciting developments are in the pipeline for the remainder of 2017 which will include the launching of collection points for the safe disposal of household batteries, which will be done in conjunction with RNF Members: Pick n Pay, VARTA Namibia and the City of Windhoek. It is envisaged to expand this to include the coastal towns of Swakopmund and Walvis Bay. Also, an expanded Windhoek Recycle Day will form part of the RNF Week, which is scheduled for 18 to 22 September and which promises to include numerous activities highlighting the importance of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.