Cookstown pupils speak out about the environment!

That’s just what pupils from across the Cookstown District were doing at the local heats of ‘ENVIRONMENTAL YOUTH SPEAK 2013.’ Pupils debated the current issues and impressed the panel of judges with their knowledge, in a bid to get through to the Regional finals.

The triumphant pupil in the junior section was Bobbi Kane, Orritor Primary School and, in the senior section, Sean McClean, Holy Trinity College.

The aim of the competition is to get young people to research and debate environmental issues. The local heats took place on 28th February, in the Council Chamber. The topics this year were, for the Junior section, ‘My waste’s got talent: what can it become?’ and for the Senior section, ‘The true cost of waste’, which explored the environmental, economic and social costs of our waste.

Pupils from schools throughout the District took part. In the junior section there was Holy Trinity P.S., Moneymore P.S., Orritor P.S., St. Patrick’s P.S. Loup and Woods P.S.

Schools taking part in the senior section were Holy Trinity College

The junior and senior finalists go on to represent the District at the regional finals, to be held at the Roe Valley Arts & Cultural Centre, Limavady on 13th March 2013. They will have to debate it out to win great prizes for themselves and their schools, and to lay claim to the perpetual trophy as overall NI winner.

Director of Operational Services, Derek Duncan, who presented participants with certificates and prizes, commented ‘Congratulations is due to all of the young people who took part in Environmental Youth Speak 2013. It was clear to see that a lot of time and effort had been put into the competition by pupils, teachers and parents researching these waste management issues and preparing their presentations. These young people have shown a great deal of enthusiasm and passion for the waste management issues we face today. We all, like these young people today, need to take action and show the same enthusiasm for recycling and reducing the waste we produce.’