Published On: June 30th, 2020

Keep Australia Beautiful (KAB), the national operator for the hugely successful international environmental education framework and awards program – Eco-Schools – has announced new free curriculum linked resources as well as grants for the Litter Legends Campaigns (LLC) and the return of their very successful Young Reporters for the Environment program.

Eco-Schools is a proven schools-based sustainability education framework operating in 68 countries globally and was developed by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) based in Denmark.

Through the Eco-Schools program, Australian schools are now linked to a global network of more than 52,000 Eco-Schools across 68 nations.

Marina Antoniozzi, KAB National Programs Manager explains that Eco-Schools provides an excellent opportunity for students to experience active citizenship in their schools.

“Both schools and the wider community benefit from this program. Participants find great encouragement in knowing their local efforts are being reciprocated around the world. More than 19 million students now attend an Eco-School and over 1.4 million teachers work in one,” adds Ms Antoniozzi.

In 2020, Eco-Schools is proud to announce two new curriculum linked resources: The Primary School Litter & Waste lesson plans and the High School Waste & Waterways lesson plans.

“Both these lesson plans are designed to educate students about how waste impacts the environment, as well as look at behaviour and solutions that can minimise waste production – be it through recycling, reusing or reducing,” says Ms Antoniozzi.

“The water-based curriculum links are extremely topical and important, especially in Australia and in the globally changing climate. When students understand where water comes from and the processes involved in getting water, they will better understand how precious it is and how dangerous marine waste can be for the world.”

Val Southam, KAB CEO, is very happy to see the return in 2020 of the Litter Legends Campaign (known internationally as Litter Less Campaign) and the Young Reporters for the Environment program.

“We are very proud to have run the Litter Legends Campaign in Australia for the last five years with the generous support from Mars Wrigley Foundation,” explains Ms Southam.

“This year, a limited number of eligible Australian schools can be in the running to receive seed grants of $500 to implement a project to reduce litter or improve recycling in their school and community.

“The campaign targets the behaviour, knowledge and opinion leadership of students. It aims for a 5-10% improvement. We also hope to see a 10% decrease in the amount of waste production or a 10% increase in the amount of waste diverted to recycling.”

The Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE), also supported by Mars Wrigley Foundation, aims to inspire young people to seek out solutions to environmental issues in their communities and to share their findings through writing, photography, or video.

“This well-established and internationally recognised program will be offering enthusiastic young people a chance to make their voices heard and to feel that they are being listened to,” adds Ms Antoniozzi.

“If you’re aged between 11-25, this is your opportunity to win cool prizes for your school, meet other young environmental newshounds at a Winner’s Workshop and awards ceremony and have your work submitted to the International YRE competition.”