La Conner Boys & Girls Club begins Recycling Project
A new program has sprung up at the La Conner Boys & Girls Club. Project: Recycle is a way to encourage youth to think about why and how they recycle and to provide an opportunity for youth to get involved in the recycling process at the Club level. Recycling is an important value to instill in youth to save energy, save resources, and protect our environment and falls in line with the Boys & Girls Club’s Priority Outcomes of Good Character & Leadership and Academic Success.
Beginning this winter, each room of the La Conner Club has three different colored waste bins. These bins are to help members separate their waste according to the categories of garbage, mixed paper, and bottles/cans. To track how well the Club is doing at sorting their waste, a dedicated group has formed known as the Sorting Squad. At the end of every day, the Sorting Squad gathers all of the waste bins from the Club. Using the proper safety equipment, this group checks each bin to ensure that the proper items are in the proper bins.
After all of the bins have been checked, the Sorting Squad records the data onto a bar graph to track the Club’s progress. At the end of each week, the Squad presents the graph to the rest of the Club members during the All-Club Meetings to show the week’s progress and to demonstrate how each member is responsible for taking care of their waste correctly to help the whole group succeed. This act is helping the youth develop a culture of teaching & stewardship for the Club & community.
In early December, the Sorting Squad took a field trip to the Skagit Transfer Station to see what happens to waste after it is put into trash bins. Members were amazed to learn that all of the garbage created in Western Washington is packed into metal shipping containers, then loaded onto a train and transported to Eastern Washington where it is added to a huge landfill. Sorting Squad members learned that by recycling, they can help lessen the amount of trash sent to the landfill and that by recycling properly, taking care to sort correctly, they can help reduce the amount of energy that is needed to make recyclable materials into something new.
Club Director Kendrick Davis-Pittmon is very excited to see kids step up. “We’ve got some incredible young people at the Club. The fact that they’ve completely bought into the responsibility of educating and leading the way towards environmental stewardship is inspiring. These kids are our future teachers, business owners, and civic leaders. And who wouldn’t want to live in a community that is run by people who have this value within themselves?”