Waste Free Wednesday is back

Waste Free Wednesday at CCGS

It's back and this time it's bigger and better than ever before. Waste Free Wednesdays are back on in Junior School with the help of the CCGS Environmental Action Group.

To launch our new and improved Waste Free Wednesday everyone in Junior School who brought a waste free lunch box on Wednesday 30 March received a free icy pole to help kick off the campaign.

Lots of proud and excited students proudly displayed their waste free lunch boxes to Environmental Action Group members - a group of dedicated volunteers from across the whole school - in exchange for a stamp that entitled them to a delicious cold treat.

Students then placed wrappers in Curby yellow bags ready for recycling and sticks went away for composting.

Waste Free Wednesday is back at CCGS

Mrs Natalie Kell, Junior School teacher said, "Over 440 Junior School students had a Waste Free Wednesday lunch today which is a great number - especially with Year 3 away on camp."

"The seed was planted on the importance of a sustainable future. Students thought about how we can manage this, starting on a personal level with their own lunch boxes."

Thank you to all CCGS families and student environmentalists who participated. A special thank you to our Environmental Action Group - made up of students from Year 5 to Year 12 - for their organisation of the day. We look forward to reducing food and packaging waste in our School and community.

Did you know?

Australia is one of the highest producers of waste per person in the western world. According to Waste Wise Schools Program, an average student's lunch generates a total of 3kg of waste per year. 

The CCGS Waste Free Wednesday is a great way to:

  • reduce food and packaging waste in our school
  • help us all understand the benefits of a waste-free lunch
  • inspire the CCGS community to avoid and recover waste wherever possible.

Need a little help or inspiration on your waste-free journey?

We asked the Environmental Action Group to give us their best tips for a waste-free lunchbox.

Tip 1: Put food and snacks in reusable containers
Cut up fruit and vegetable sticks and place them in containers. Rather than using cling film, foil or zip lock bags put your sandwich in a reusable container or invest in a beeswax sandwich wrapper or bag that can be washed and reused. 

Tip 2: Put drinks in refillable containers
Grab your refillable water bottle and fill it up for the day. Students can refill at the water stations around the campus.

Packing a waste free lunch box can be simple

Tip 3: Use up any leftover food
Put last night's leftovers in a container for the next day and pack a set of reusable cutlery. "I love pasta bake so I'm super happy when I get leftovers."

Tip 4: Buy in bulk
School lunch items often come packed into single serves for convenience. But these items have a great impact on our environment and the family budget. Consider what items could be bulk purchased. For example, one large packet of sultanas vs one multi-pack of single-serve sultana boxes. "Cheese and crackers are my favourite. We used to pack pre-packaged cheese and crackers but now mum buys a big box of crackers and cuts up some cheese each day. I love it!"

Tip 5: Don't waste it
If you don't eat all your recess or lunch then that is ok. Consider taking it home for afternoon tea or putting it in your compost bin at home. Don't be afraid to talk to your family about the foods you like or don't like in your lunchbox. "I am so hungry when I finish school. I get in the car and all I want to do is eat. If I've got something left in my lunchbox it's great. Even before dad has started the engine, I'm eating any snacks I have leftover."

Tip 6: Make your own ahead of time
Make your own delicious muffins, muesli bars or even sandwiches to freeze and pop in your lunchbox each day. Some recipe ideas from Kidspot might provide the inspiration you need to try something new or get the kids in the kitchen with you on the weekend to prepare ahead. "My mum and dad both go to work early so making our lunches ahead of time is really important. Each Sunday we make our sandwiches for the week and freeze them. Then I take one out to defrost the night before and pop it in a sandwich container. Really easy and really quick."

Environmental sustainability is a key part of the School's Striving for Excellence Strategic Plan 2021-2025. Reducing the amount of waste we produce is one thing we can all help to do.

As a School, we are looking into ways we can reduce our impact on the environment. Some measures we've taken so far include introducing solar panelling which now generates some of our electricity, installed LED lights throughout the buildings, implemented biodegradable packaging in the canteen and smart metering throughout the school to monitor our water usage. Of course there is more to do but we're making some great progress!