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Garbage Busters in action

Students from the Grade 4 class at Arrowview Elementary school give their pitch to council.                     Neil Horner photo -
Students from the Grade 4 class at Arrowview Elementary school give their pitch to council. Neil Horner photo
— image credit:

Qualicum Beach may boast the oldest average age in the country, but that average was lowered significantly at last Monday night’s council meeting, when a class of Grade 4 students made their pitch.

The students, members of Arrowview Elementary School’s Garbage Busters club, showed up in force, along with teacher Jodi Waters, to push for their latest proposal, a series of painted footprints on a pathway outside their school, which would have messages about the environment and other healthy lifestyle choices inscribed on them.

The Garbage Busters were started three years ago in Waters’ Grade 4 class at Qualicum Beach Elementary and expanded to Arrowview when she moved to that school. It was sparked, she said, by the students viewing pictures of the giant garbage patch floating in the Pacific Ocean.

Under Waters’ direction, the students decided to take some action in their own back yard and clean up litter in the school’s immediate area.

Last year the Garbage Busters were given a special garbage can by council that they decorated with messages about a clean environment, a project they repeated this year.

However, this year’s team wanted to take their project one step farther and so made Monday’s request.

While council didn’t take a vote on the request, Mayor Teunis Westbroek praised the participants, all of whom took part in reading their presentation.

“These are really, really sharp-thinking kids,” he said. “I hope we can work together with this great idea to make it work.”

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