Event: Mamzar beach clean up

Date: March, May and December (2018)

Our Eco Warrior team have developed multiple community links since our establishment in early 2018. One of our most valued links is with the Green Hope charity. In March 2018, May 2018 and December 2019, they kindly invited 60 of our students to beach clean-up events. The events took place at Mamzar beach and was organized in association with Dubai Municipality.

Students are provided with biodegradable bags and gloves and immediately commence the mammoth task that is cleaning Mamzar beach. Each group focuses on a different section of the beach to ensure no stone was left unturned. Although the events only last two hours, the students regularly collect up to 20 bags of rubbish.

Venturing out into our community with the hope of reducing land and water pollution is always an eye opening experience. We were constantly surprised at just how much of our rubbish ends up on our beaches and in the oceans. As a result of this experiences, our Eco Warriors have been inspired to organise workshops led by Green Hope to create awareness on this issue and teach students about the impact their pollution has our costal ecosystems.

 

Event: Festival city planting

Date: April, 2018

Global warming is becoming increasingly evident with every month that passes. Typhoons, flooding, droughts and hurricanes are words we hear far too often on the news. Our Eco Warrior team have been blessed with opportunities to reverse the negative impacts of global warming with thanks to the Green Hope charity. In March 2018, they kindly invited 10 of our year 7 students to a planting event in Dubai’s Festival City.

The students were educated on the benefits of planting trees and were given a short workshop on how to plant successfully. The students got straight to work and worked in pairs to plant over 20 trees and plants. They will be cared for by Dubai Municipality and we hope they will thrive there for many years to come.

This is just one way we hope to have an impact on our atmosphere by reducing the carbon in the atmosphere and our own carbon footprints. The plants and trees will absorb carbon dioxide from our atmosphere and emit oxygen, the gas which is imperative to our survival. The Eco Warriors plan to build a school garden out of recycled materials in the winter of 2018 as a result of what they have learned.

 

Event: Workshop by Green Hope Charity

Date: April (KS1) and May (KS2 & 3)

Green Hope have given various workshops in our school to educate our students on a variety of topics. The topics for KS2 & 3 included climate change, sustainable consumption and production, gender equality, biodiversity conservation, usage of clean energy and their overall impact on children’s rights.

Key Stage 1 were treated with a hands on workshop focusing on reducing, reusing and recycling our papers and plastics. The students actively participated and have been the best collectors of plastic bottles in the school. As part of their workshop, the students created reusable lunch bags using their newspapers.

 

Event: Community clean up in Muhaisnah 4

A community cleanup brings volunteers together to clean, repair, and improve public spaces or other areas (such as vacant lots or abandoned properties) that have been neglected, vandalized, or misused. Cleanup projects can involve all kinds of public spaces—parks, riverbanks, schoolyards, sidewalks, playing fields, and even parking lots, to name just a few.

At SMM we focus our community clean-up drives around the immediate vicinity. In the last academic year we brought a different class every second week. The class who recycled the most plastic was selected by our Eco Warriors.

The students work in pairs to collect rubbish in biodegradable bags. Our students noticed that the most common types of litter were plastic bottles and food wrappers. We cleaned the area around the local mosque, apartment blocks and Lulu Village.

 

Event: Mangrove Visit – Planting and Restoration

Date: May, 2018

The Jebel Ali Wildlife Sanctuary is a 2,002-hectare wetland that covers the marine area between the Palm Jebel Ali and up to the Dubai-Abu Dhabi border to the southwest of Dubai.

It is where the Ghantoot Marine Reserve is located. It is a coastal and marine wetland that has coral reefs, mangroves, shallow lagoons, seagrass beds, oyster beds, and sandy shorelines that provide shelter to 539 marine species such as the critically endangered hawksbill turtle, the endangered mottled eagle ray, and green turtle.

The site is under the management of Dubai Municipality, which facilitated for the inclusion of the wetlands in the Ramsar list. Al Hajiri said the site is open to the public and plans are underway to make the site more ecotourism friendly.

The Jebel Ali Wetland Sanctuary is located close to one of the major development projects in Dubai. Its protection sends a message to the world that development and the economic growth within the UAE and Dubai is growing while at the same time we’re looking after the environment and biodiversity. So balance is always vital and important.

In order to keep the mangroves and their surrounding ecosystems healthy, 40 of our Eco Warriors participated in a restoration project. It involved a beach clean-up, mangrove cleaning and planting. During our time there we met with Major Ali who taught us all about the importance of this ecosystem and the ancient art of pearl diving and its history in the UAE. His staff gave us an informative guided tour of the reserve and we were even given the opportunity to meet some of the beautiful animals in their care.

 

Event: Simply Bottles

Date: October, 2018

SIMPLY BOTTLES is a Plastic Bottle recycling campaign working with businesses, schools, non-profits and consumers to increase the recycling of water bottles across the United Arab Emirates. Creating awareness, educating about plastic waste and recycling, the program provides participants with a practical solution to plastic collection for recycling.

After some research projects in science about recycling in the UAE, we were motivated to address our plastic consumption. At SMM we discovered that only 40% of our students were using reusable bottles while the other 60% were using single use plastic bottles.

Here are some of the statistics we came across in our research that motivated our innovation:

·         Around 2.75 billion plastic bottles produced in the U.A.E annually with current recycling rates below 6%.6
·         50% of camels die in the U.A.E. from ingesting plastic
·         UAE has one of the highest consumption rates of bottled water per person in the world, averaging 275 bottles per person per year.
·         Lack of consumer awareness for the need to recycle plastic.
·         Lack of recycling infrastructure due to fluctuating rates for raw material outpu
·         It is estimated there will be more plastic (tonnage) in the sea than fish by 2050.
We have decided to take part in this initiative because:
·         We want to help meet Dubai Plan 2021 objectives to divert 75% of all waste from landfill.
·         We aim to educate, inspire, include and encourage the next generation to recycle.
·         We want to help raise awareness for environmental sustainability through behavioural change.
·         We want to meet organisational sustainability goals.
·         We desperately want to significantly reduce plastic waste-to-landfill and increase recovery rate of plastics in the U.A.E.
What do they do?
When our plastic bottles are collected, compressed, bailed, washed, flaked and sorted. The plastic flakes are heated and melted to produce both long and short fibers for yarn production. This yarn can be woven or knitted in the same way as conventional fabric, thus helping to create a sustainable system for recycling waste back into everyday products, such as clothing and accessories.