Walter Sawtell and Kinzie Campbell standing in front of the Taabinga State School sign
Walter Sawtell and Kinzie Campbell standing in front of the Taabinga State School sign Contributed

Taabinga breaks down small-town recycling barriers

TAABINGA State School teachers are raising awareness for recycling in Kingaroy.

Ms Stephanie Tognola started the initiative to raise awareness in smaller towns.

"I started to think about how we can recycle in Kingaroy, because if we compare to Brisbane, they have their yellow recycling bins,” she said.

"In Kingaroy, we don't really have ways that we can recycle as well as we could.”

Before beginning the project, Ms Tognola looked into different recycling companies the school could use.

"Originally, we started off with Terracycle, and we started looking at different things we could do to recycle and do it for free,” she said.

"Through Terracycle, we're collecting toothpaste, dental products, empty toiletries and make up, as well as empty post packaging.

"When Containers for Change came out, we thought that since we were already doing all these other recycling activities, we might as well do that one too.”

The school has also pitched themselves as a recycling collection point for the public.

"We talked to Deb Frecklington in her office thinking that local businesses could send items to us so that we could recycle it as well. Their office was very on-board, and Deb will be supporting us with that,” Ms Tognola said.

Ms Tognola wants to keep improving the recycling structures at the school.

"We ended up purchasing a box from teracycle which will allow us to branch out a bit further when recycling. With this box, there are kids that are bringing chip packets and muesli bars, they're now able to put those wrappers into a box for us to send away, too,” she said.

"We do get some money for it, but it's not a lot. The main thing is that the children are learning about why we should recycle. It's also great to hear the children ask each other what they should and shouldn't be recycling. It's really bringing awareness for the kids.”

Ms Tognola said many students previously didn't know about recycling.

"I definitely think they're learning new things,” she said.

"I know that in Year 5, the children look at recycling, but for the other year levels, it's not something that's generally taught a lot.

"Especially because we don't have recycling facilities in town, it is a little bit harder for the kids to access that knowledge. Because of this, we're all really excited for the project, and we're going to keep it going through next year, too.”

South Burnett

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