Young people can be apathetic when it comes to environmental issues, while others are enthusiastic about making change but feel powerless to do so. Underlying everything is the wider problem of climate change, which many young people do feel passionate about, while political leaders are reluctant to take decisive action on.
The Start the Switch program helps students set up a group in their school to run a number of sustainability projects. These can range from mobile phone recycling, to creating a vegetable patch, to holding a fundraising event to raise money for solar panels. This promotes a positive attitude towards the environment and sustainability while making tangible change, rather than just learning about these issues in a classroom.
‘The Start the Switch summit has given the students in our environment committee a clear vision and purpose and stimulated them to come up with some great ideas that they can put into practice in our school and local community.’
– Teacher, Mercy College Mackay