More than 200 children from schools across the Waikato region have attended this year’s Enviroschools event held at the Mystery Creek Event Centre near Hamilton this week.
The children – described as “embarking on a lifelong journey of sustainability” – took part in a range of learning activities, presentations and games related to protecting the environment.
Key concepts explored included interdependence and globalisation, identity and cultural diversity, global citizenship, social justice and human rights, peace building and conflict resolution, and how to live in a sustainable community.
Waikato Regional Council’s support for the event – now in its fifth year – was emphasized when Cr Jane Hennebry said how much she valued what children and schools achieve out in the community.
“It’s great to be here, to see all their hard work and hear about the contributions the children are making out in the community,” she said.
“The council looks at them embarking on a lifelong journey of sustainability and I want to congratulate them all for starting on that journey. Let the children lead the way.”
Enviroschools facilitator Robyn Irving said it was essential for children to get to know other pupils from across the Waikato, something that would give them a sense of perspective.
“It’s really good for students to meet new faces, articulate what they are learning and consolidate that learning,” she said.
A number of students from St Patrick’s School in Te Awamutu said the event was a lot of fun.
Hannah Coffin, 11, said her favourite part was “meeting new people”, while Daniel Penny, 10, enjoyed “sharing experiences” with people during the presentations. Alana Oliver, 11, said it was “interesting to hear new ideas”.
Enviroschools now involves 185 schools in the Waikato region. This year has seen schools and communities work together to learn and take action through the focus on “global issues, local realities”.