Students honoured for efforts by charity aid agency GOAL

By William O'Connor

THIRD-class students from Our Lady Queen of the Apostles National School in Clondalkin, were honoured by humanitarian aid agency, GOAL, for demonstrating their contribution and commitment to helping achieve the Global Goals.

The pupils were named as joint winners in the GOAL Changemakers Competition for highlighting the issue of food waste and encouraging food suppliers to their school to use biodegradable packaging.

Teacher Paula Frances Galvin with Clonburris NS Third Class compressor

Pupils from Our Lady Queen of the Apostles NS with teacher Paula Frances Galvin 

The competition invited primary school students all over Ireland to share their actions for global change.

Inspired by Nobel Prize winner Wangari Maathai’s story of the hummingbird to “do the best I can”, the children decided to focus on Sustainable Development Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production for their Changemakers entry.

Shocked by the amount of food packaging and food waste discarded daily in their school, they lobbied their school food suppliers to provide reusable utensils and to change to biodegradable packaging.

The pupils also urged their school to buy quality Irish products and to continue their support of Fairtrade.

The students have vowed to continue their campaign for biodegradable packaging on their lunches and to encourage the use of quality Irish food so that their actions will impact on people in low and middle income countires in the Global South, such as Aisa, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The students composed two songs, one, about their desire to not use plastic at school and another about changes everyone can make to be more conscious of our consumption and damage to the environment.

Third-Class teacher, Paula Frances Galvin said: “The children have been motivated on this topic for a long time and it is fantastic that their efforts have been recognised by a global organisation like GOAL.

The children strive to live up to Mahatma Ghandi’s quote ‘Be the change you want in the world’ and their commitment is admirable to all ages.”

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