Day 2 was hosted at the school and started off with an introduction to plastic waste pollution and was followed by more information on the problem globally and locally by Goumbook. The presentation was focused on our ability as consumers to simply say no to using disposable plastic, in particular bottled water. This presentation was further strengthened by a live water testing and water tasting session.
The students lined up to taste 2 water samples, one filtered tap water (drinking water) and another Evian bottled water. Of course, they did not know which was which and they had to vote for the sample they found tastier. The results actually showed that filtered water tasted better! To add to that a simple pH test was done on both samples, and the pH levels were pretty much identical.
After those counter intuitive results and watching a documentary about plastic waste, the students were split into groups to map out some solutions they would like to see at the school to reduce the disposable plastic used and to add more greenery to help purify the air the students and school community is breathing. After a few hours of mapping problems, brainstorming solutions, the students presented to each other the ideas they came up with which included discouraging students from purchasing disposable water bottles by increasing their price while adding more water fountains next to the canteen and having a booth that sells reusable bottles that the students simply refill and bring to school daily. For the students who wouldn’t have those bottles there would be acrylic cups next to the fountains to be used, washed at the cafeteria and so on. A similar idea was to be adopted for the plates and cutlery. As for the plastic that would inevitably still be consumed, student gardens mainly focused on potted gardens were designed. The pots would be made from the plastic bottle consumed at the school which had the benefit of reducing school waste and also made the gardens portable which meant they could be moved indoors/outdoors based on weather and could be taken home during vacations or even sold to families in fares.