Green Kids program shoots for the stars

Haldane Elementary school has taken “being green’ to a national level

Mrs. Melnychuk and Haldane’s newest Green Kids Club members

Haldane Elementary school has taken “being green’ to a national level as they have become the first school in Canada to achieve the Earth 7 status.

Nineteen years after Mrs. Melnychuk began the Green Kids program at the Chase elementary school, Haldane has achieved something no other school in Canada has been able to do.

Melnychuk has led the students and staff of Haldane Elementary to complete more than 7,000 environmentally friendly projects over the years, an accomplishment she is quite proud of.

These projects include everything from cleaning garbage off their school grounds, to recycling in all the classrooms, to more fun and challenging tasks.

Last November the school held an upcycling challenge to see how students could take a recyclable product and repurpose it into something new.

The students also host a funky sweater competition annually in February and have recently taken their green awareness projects to an international level with such efforts as their fortune cookies for Zambia program.

Melnychuk is proud of what the school has been able to accomplish in such a short time, explaining that it was just in 2010 that she began the push for Earth 5 status.

“We put the push on so that we would be the top school in Canada for the Olympics; we accomplished that around the start of the year,”  explains Melnychuck. “When the Olympics began we were the greenest school in Canada and we have been continuing on since then.”

The Green Kids Club won’t be slowing down just yet as they have already set their sights on Earth status 8 and have begun working their way through their next 1,000 projects.

Melnychuk, however, may not be around to celebrate this accomplishment as she will be retiring after this year.

“I extend a challenge to all the students and teachers to keep the program alive and running,” she says.

It took the elementary school teacher 19 years to build the Green Kids Club to what it is today, and she hopes that someone will step forward to carry it on.

Melynchuk also reminds students that anyone can become a Green Kid as long as they attend five meetings. After each meeting the child will take a letter which teaches them something different about being green, such as the basics of recycling. This, says Melnychuk, also helps to educate the parents as well.

To honour their many efforts in reducing their environmental footprint, the school district donated solar panels to the elementary school last year.

“We are excited to see how much money they have saved us since,” she says, adding that they should help save at least $1,000.

Another exciting addition to the school’s green efforts is their large barrel composter outside the school, that will allow a larger composting program throughout the school.

Melnychuk explains that they had tried other methods in the past, including earth worms, but found flies to be an issue. She believes the new barrel will solve all the problems.

The compost, she says, might later be used to help fertilize the new flower bed the parent advisory council has put in, in front of the school.


Just Posted

Demand for mental health services increasing with acceptance

Support organization sees growing waitlist, particularly for youth and families with children

Family uprooted by suspicious fire grateful for support

Salmon Arm man thankful treasured artwork, family photos undamaged

Olympic rower challenging diabetics to live life to the fullest

Chris Jarvis of I Challenge Diabetes will visit Salmon Arm schools May 15

Commercial recyclables still going to landfill

Province asked to broaden scope of permitted recyclable materials

Crown drops one Vernon assault charge against Curtis Sagmoen

Curtis Wayne Sagmoen will still stand trial on one count of assault causing bodily harm in December.

SilverStar avalanches not scaring off skiers

Putnam Creek remains closed, but frontside of the mountain runs are fully operational

B.C. man gets award for thwarting theft, sexual assault – all in 10 minutes

Karl Dey helped the VPD take down a violent sex offender

Indigenous students recognized at ceremony at Okanagan College

The ceremony recognizes that students are getting an education while holding onto Indigenous background and teachings

Baby left alone in vehicle in Walmart parking lot

Williams Lake RCMP issue warning after attending complaint at Walmart Wednesday

Behind the mask of the South Okanagan furries community

Penticton furries community member said it’s not a sexual thing

Canada Finance Minister to promote budget in Kelowna

Bill Morneau will speak in Kelowna

Trees removed from Central Okanagan to mitigate wildfire risk

Kelowna - Projects are ongoing across B.C. to reduce the risk of wildfire

Trailer Park Boy brings Cheeseburger Tour to Okanagan

Randy performs at Vernon’s Status Nightclub Friday, with Kelowna comics

Most Read