A decade of kNOwing Waste in NSW

Cleanaway’s kNOw Waste education program is celebrating teaching its 150,000th student this week.

For a decade, Cleanaway, Australia’s preferred kerbside waste and recycling contractor has been making a sustainable future possible through the kNOw Waste™ Schools and Community Education Program.

Aimed at encouraging the development of short and long-term environmental behaviour change, the kNOw waste program promotes effective waste management and key environmental values to support classroom learning.

Highly qualified teachers deliver the kNOw waste program for students from preschool to secondary school and deliver messaging around the importance of the correct use of their household kerbside recycling and waste services.

The kNOw Waste highlights the importance of understanding how the local council provides kerbside waste service through teaching a range of modules focussed on sustainability.

Michelle Mandl-Keating, Education Manager NSW explains our most popular module in preschool is called ‘Natures Recyclers’.

“We provide a really ‘hands on’ experience for students that teaches them how worms and other composting creatures are responsible for an essential natural recycling process,” Michelle says.

“Kids have the opportunity to see a live worm farm and feed the worms, as well as meet our Tropical North QLD Giant Burrowing Cockroach, Bernadette.

“In primary schools we find from the perspective of our councils and schools that our ‘Litter Litter module’ is important to students understanding.

“Recognizing the litter produced at school or outside of school has an impact beyond the area it occurs is an important understanding for students of this age.”

The future of the program is cemented in the fact that Australians are some of the highest waste producers in the world.

This means teaching our children from an early age that they have responsibilities and the capacity to effect positive change in their immediate environment is really important.

The 150,000th student was taught at Ashbury Kidz Academy, a preschool within council partner Canterbury Bankstown City Council.

A celebration included games, prizes and a visit from a Canterbury recycling collection truck.

Cleanaway have been delivering the kNOw waste education program to schools and communities since 2005.