During the week of May 30th to June 3rd, Bathurst High School held its 2nd Annual Street-Cleaning Event. Classes were able to sign up for a specific time and assigned a location within walking distance of BHS to clean up our streets. Once again, the City of Bathurst provided garbage bags and garbage collection at the end of each collection day, Ducks Unlimited provided 25 quality metal grabbers and Fastenal donated another 25. 30 bright yellow safety vests that were purchased last year as well as several leather work gloves that were saved from last year’s event were reused. Encorp Atlantic’s Recycling Hero grant went toward the purchase of a special treat for each participant and distributed the hats to the best collectors!
The event was a huge success with 51 classes taking part which translates to approximately 51 hours of street cleaning over the one-week period. Almost every student in the school was out at least once during the week. The environmental science class travelled to a problem area and were very disappointed to see just how much garbage was collected in no more than 40 minutes. So much so that a pile was left behind to be collected by the city later. This year, as a final outing, students were asked to volunteer on Sunday, June 5th to clean the on and off ramps to the highway on Vanier Boulevard. Police assistance was requested for this location as it was close to faster mowing traffic. So many vehicles honked and showed their support as they passed the students hard at work. Once again, the willingness of students to participate, get dirty and collect even the smallest debris was impressive, and any refundable containers found were diverted to the school recycling bins.
In addition to the school, this year the BHS Environmental Club sent a letter to each school in the area inviting them to join in by cleaning up their school neighborhoods. We heard back from multiple schools saying they would join in the effort to clean up the city.
This event has now become part of the students’ end of year team-building activities, and we hope that the students find less and less litter in the future as they witness first-hand how much litter there is in their own back yard.