Garbage Busters kick it up a notch

Environmental team at Arrowview Elementary gets more town support

Teacher Jodi Waters and Mayor Teunis Westbroek add their thumb prints to the latest Garbage Busters can.

The Garbage Busters club at Arrowsmith Elementary School in Qualicum Beach will be getting their message about environmental responsibility out to yet another venue, now that they’ve completed painting another message-filled garbage can.

Jodi Waters, a Grade 5 teacher at the school, heads up the club, formed fouryears ago in response to concerns about the great Pacific garbage patch and its corresponding, land-based equivalent, found on the sidewalks and playgrounds of Qualicum Beach.

Under Waters’ direction, the club, then housed at Qualicum Beach Elementary School, proposed painting a town garbage can with environmental messages to help promote a more environmentally responsible attitude in the town.

The municipality got on board and there are now three of the cans on prominent display, one at Qualicum Beach Elementary, one at the Civic Centre and one in town hall.

“This is can number four,” Waters said. “Last year we included hand prints on the design and the year before that we did footprints, to represent our carbon footprint. This time we thought we would use thumb prints.

The artwork on the can includes a surreal cityscape painted by Waters, with rooftop gardens sporting greenery made up of the thumb prints of the students involved.

On hand for the unveiling Tuesday was Qualicum Beach Mayor Teunis Westbroek, who called the class an inspiration, not only to the citizenry as a whole, but to him, personally.

“It’s inspiring,” he said. “Sometimes I go to meetings or attend different functions and I hear lots of negative feedback, but this class has always been very positive and it makes my day.”

He said he would have the can placed in the Qualicum Beach Community Hall, where its message is sure to be seen.



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