The environmental club at Riverside Secondary is trying to make the school more eco-friendly by placing compost bins around the building. But they have been in the school for a while and the usage of them has been limited.

Ms. Jacquelyn Collins, a teacher at Riverside Secondary and in charge of the environmental club, said their goal is to find ways to reduce Riverside’s ecological footprint. “We look at practices that happen in the school and see what kind of changes we can make,” said Collins.

“Composting is our number one focus. We’re trying to increase the use of compost bins around the school. We want to make this project bigger, and more effective,” she said.

Fatima Yaseen, a grade 12 student at Riverside secondary, and a part of the environmental club, said the compost bins never get very full. “I think we need more bins. If a student is eating lunch at an area where we don’t have a bin, they’re not going to compost their food. It’s all about convenience,” said Yaseen.

We want to make this project bigger, and more effective
Ms. Jacquelyn Collins

There are five different compost bins placed around the school. “There are only five bins because there aren’t that many people in our club,” she said. “I joined at the start of the year because Collins, my art teacher, said she needed a few more people to take care of the compost bins. So, a friend and I joined the club,” said Yaseen.

The club had the first five compost bins donated, and they said they’re trying to get more. “We’ve done some fundraising to buy more bins; we already did a bake sale and it had a good turn out,” said Yaseen.

The club meets Tuesdays at lunch in room 106. “We talk about how to increase composting and how the bins are going. Recently we’ve been talking about eliminating Styrofoam from the cafeteria because it’s used a lot and it’s very bad for the environment. We want to use something more compostable. We’re talking to the people who run the cafeteria about it, so we’re in the process,” said Yaseen.

Collins said the environmental club is still looking for new members. “We invite anyone to come and be a part of the group,” she said.


Photo courtesy of Peter Dazeley