The Environmental Group started our first hands-on project at the school today. When we arrived, some of the school children were already congregating and getting their hands stuck in around the patch of soil we were going to start our work on. Our initial plan was to raise awareness about littering, recycling around the school grounds, and the advantages of creating one’s own compost.

First, we had to over-turn the soil to reveal and remove the vast amount of rubbish hidden beneath. All of the volunteers were shocked to see the quantity of rubbish that was buried. Every time we picked up rubbish and overturned more soil, a new heap of rubbish would appear. We then went to a house that belongs to a school girl to collect their homemade compost which we will then use to plant the vegetables in.

As the children were finishing overturning the soil, some of the volunteers brought these massive rubber tyres which would become the vegetable patches.

We dug up the ground to the same size of the tyres so we could place them in the soil. All of the children helped us collect rocks to place around the tyres to add a rock garden effect.

Although we could not finish everything, by next week we hope to plant all the vegetables in the tyres and teach the children how to maintain the vegetable patch.

It was really great to see the amount of children that got involved with the digging, rubbish collection, and to see they were having fun while interacting with the volunteers. I enjoyed this day in particular as it allowed me to communicate with the children more and learn a little more about them.

Written by ICS Volunteers Harvie Chiu