Pictured at the awards presentation for the School Recycling Challenge are Molly Shell, from left, in front, Chloe Marie Lane and Marin Shell; Alicia Shell, second row, from left, Collin Lane, Bristol Dyal, Marisol Soler, Josef Lopez and Christy Trowbridge; and Stephanie Schwartz, third row, from left, Barbara Farias, Jennifer King and Dr. Terry Mermann. Not pictured are Quen Blanchard, Morgane Mayz, Kenneth Ayala, Ava Goldstone and Wanda Shue.

With the goal of reducing waste, the Keep Golden Isles Beautiful 2019 School Recycling Challenge did just that. This fall, 14 local schools took part in the challenge to collect non-traditional items for recycling. By collecting items not accepted in local curbside recycling programs, participating schools had an immediate and profound impact on reducing landfill waste. In just two short weeks, students collected 192 pounds of oral care products, pens/markers/highlighters and cereal bags – all diverted from the landfill and now to be recycled via TerraCycle. At the recent awards ceremony held at Hello GoodBuy, first, second and third place schools in each of the challenge categories received an upcycled award and bookmarks for their entire student body, as well as their choice of a school recycling bin or coastal-themed books. The challenge was supported by a Hello GoodBuy community grant. “The Challenge was a tremendous success and we greatly appreciate the effort of all participating schools,” said KGIB Executive Director Lea King-Badyna. “The collected poundage is even more impressive when we consider the individual size and weight of the collected materials, meaning a huge amount of little items comprised the final poundage.”

Participating schools included Brunswick High School, Burroughs-Molette Elementary, College of Coastal Georgia, First Baptist Preschool, Frederica Academy, Glyndale Elementary, Glynn Middle, Golden Isles Elementary, Morningstar Academy and Glynn Learning Center, Oglethorpe Point Elementary, St. Francis Xavier Catholic School, St. Simons Elementary, Satilla Marsh Elementary and Sterling Elementary.

Top placing schools included:

• Writing implement category – Frederica Academy, first place; Satilla Marsh Elementary, second place and Sterling Elementary, third place.

• Oral care category – Satilla Marsh Elementary, first place; Sterling Elementary, second place and St. Francis Xavier, third place.

• Cereal bag category – Satilla Marsh Elementary, first place; Oglethorpe Point Elementary, second place and First Baptist Preschool, third place.