This article was written by guest writer, Kiera Vanveen

Hello Rapids. The Riverside Environmental Club is hosting Green Week this March 8-12. This is an event where students get to participate in activities and challenges through social media and school to potentially win prizes and create healthy and sustainable habits for the environment. Riverside Student grade 11, Kiera Vanveen, wanted to make a change in the community. So, she started with a small step towards educating the public to make healthier habits through an engaging experience. With the help of a team of students from the Riverside Environmental Club, Ana Arango, Dženan Jauzović, Ethan Fukuhara, Kiera Lee, Narissa Gillani, and teacher sponsor, Mr. Brian Chan, a lot of hard work has gone in to prepare for the event. The Port Coquitlam business association has sponsored prizes to help make the event a success, including $50 pizza or bowling experiences, and $25 gift cards.

This week’s activities include the following:

Meatless Monday: students are encouraged to bring meatless food, or buy a provided vegan option, Beyond Burgers, prepared by Riverside’s cafeteria. Vegan recipes will be posted to the @riverside_environment Instagram page as well. If you decide to buy a vegan option, you can go to the kiosk by the cafeteria and enter your name in a draw for a prize. Eating vegan will benefit the environment and create a balanced eco-system in a number of ways: less land used for cattle; less methane gas from the cattle polluting the air; and, more humane treatment of animals.

Lights out Tuesday: the community is encouraged to turn out their lights and let the sun, a sustainable energy source, light up the room for a day, providing Vitamin D for your skin and helping reduce power consumption. The team will be encouraging other schools in the district to join Riverside on this day to make a bigger impact.

Transportation Wednesday: the community is encouraged to commute by biking, skateboarding, walking, or taking transit for the day. This can help us all reduce greenhouse gases and get our fitness in for the day! Stay tuned to announcements and Instagram for prizes for participating Riverside students!

Trash-less Thursday: students are encouraged to bring all trash they used throughout the day back home to be disposed of properly; teachers will also be able to sign up for their class to go on nature walks and pick up trash with provided garbage kits. Teachers or students can email Mr. Brian Chan at to sign up for the kits. Students can go solo or make a group of up to 3 members, then submit a photo of their pile of garbage to our social media with the hashtag #rssgreenweek and potentially win a prize!

Recycle Friday: this will be the last day of green week. Do not forget to wear green and take a moment to educate yourself on how to properly sort garbage. If the bags are not properly sorted, they will end up in the landfill and not be recycled or composted! Let’s make some better habits. Friday is the last day to bring bottles to your local Return-It depot where the profits can be put under the name of Riverside Environmental Club to fund green projects around the school and community.

There will be a raffle with three potential winners. Ticket sales will be every lunch from March 8-12 at the kiosk by the cafeteria. The winner will be drawn on March 12 at 9:00 PM.

Don’t forget to check out the club’s social media, @riverside_enviroment, to find out more information on how to win prizes and participate in activities. Look for posters around the school to get more info! Now Riverside, “Lets’ RAPIDly save the environment!”