Written by the YCDS Green Team
Happy Earth Week! We are excited to celebrate our Earth together virtually, and we have many suggestions on how we are doing this below. Before we get to that, we would like to tell you a little bit about how we got started, what we have accomplished so far, and our plans for the future.
On Friday, September 20th, the founding members of the Green Team joined in an international climate strike organized by environmental activist Greta Thunberg. These members hoped that by doing this, they would be able to increase the students’ awareness of the climate change problem that we all face today. From there, the members worked with the administration to form a new club with the goal of educating the community and creating environmentally conscious change within York Country Day School.
Upon the creation of the Green Team, the club has expanded membership and led change within the school. One of their first initiatives was getting the dining hall certified by the Green Restaurant Association. The Green Restaurant Certification recognized restaurants for their dedication to environmentally friendly practices. The GRA evaluates restaurants for seven categories: water efficiency, waste reduction, and recycling, sustainable furnishings and building materials, sustainable food, energy, disposables, chemical, and pollution reduction. Depending on their scores in these categories, the restaurant is assigned a number of stars. The Green Team gave their GRA representative a tour through the dining hall, kitchen, and surrounding facilities. We examined appliances and ways in which YCDS was already dedicated to green practices, as well as in what ways we can improve. As of now, our dining hall is at the base level of one star. YCDS is the only school and one of two restaurants (the only school) in York, PA to take on this initiative. You may view our Green Report Card here.
Another initiative by the Green Team was a fundraiser for the animals and habitats in Australia. A particularly harsh season of wildfires has so far led to 12 million acres of land burned and countless animals injured. The school participation in this fundraiser led to a total of $2,000 raised. With this money, the Green Team will adopt a koala, kangaroo, and a quokka. With the remaining donations, Green Team will give to the World Wildlife Fund, where the money will go towards caring for thousands of injured wildlife and restoring their homes, protecting endangered species and habitats, and combating the challenge of climate change.
This coming Wednesday is Earth Day. Our school’s Green Team has coordinated some activities in which you can choose to engage at home during this special day that officially happens each spring. See below for inspiration. If you opt to partake in an Earth Day activity, please consider sending a picture or video clip of your experience to firstname.lastname@example.org.