Something that is extremely unique is to be able to attend a school where a mainly student-led week of events can be planned and carried out, we should be proud to be part of a community where this can happen.
#WHSEnvironmentWeek 2018 was an amazing week that I felt really privileged to have led. Whilst stressful at times, the week was a testament to the incredible community we have here at WHS, everyone got involved with the events and was generally enthusiastic to know more about the topics we were exploring.
From endangered animals to pollution, each day had a theme that allowed us as a school to get to grips and understand more about every aspect of the issues we face when trying to save the environment. Understanding is often the route to change – as each person starts to understand more about the problems present in the world, they will change their actions to help solve them. The fact that there are so many ages and people from different backgrounds at WHS means that any education about the environment can be really impactful. If we as a community know to how fix humankind’s wrongdoings and work to towards a healthier Earth, then we can transfer this knowledge to our families and beyond. Meaning that soon everyone will have a clearer idea about how to really change their actions for the better.
As well as the enjoyment we got from the various events that happened throughout the week, the events also helped us to help the wider world by donating to charity. Our Planet Earth screening was in aid of WWF, by donating to them we are closer to saving animals from extinction, also our ‘Bring and Buy’ sale profits were donated to ‘Union of Concerned Scientists’ a charity who’s “scientists and engineers develop and implement innovative, practical solutions to some of our planet’s most pressing problems”. I feel this charity is one that can really change the way the planet is run, in favour of sustaining our environment.
We ended the week by creating a mural using donated plastic as well as cards that were filled out in peer counselling with the prompt ‘What the environment means to me’. Through creating the mural and reading all the comments (often accompanied by stunning drawings) it was clear that we all care about the environment and want to make a difference, something that is an achievement in itself, often getting people to care is the hardest part.
I have used lots of words like ‘save’ and ‘change’, which make helping the environment seem like a mammoth task – this is not the case. If we all do something in our day to day lives that helps the planet, by not eating meat one day a week (preventing forests being cleared for cattle farms) or walking to work/school (reducing air pollution), we would soon see positive change. I hope that this week has inspired us as a school to make a stand about saving the environment and spurred you on to make that one change.