Montreal, May 25, 2022 – A total of 217 schools, CEGEPs and educational institutions participated in the battery collection contest organized by ENvironnement JEUnesse and Call2Recycle. During the school year, 23.5 tons of batteries were collected.
“Recycling batteries is a simple act that has a tangible and immediate impact on the environment,” explains Catherine Gauthier, Executive Director, ENvironnement JEUnesse. “This year’s results are amazing. If you line up 850,000 AA batteries, you can cover the distance between Montreal and Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu! In the pilot year of the contest, we collected 5 tons. We would not have reached Longueuil! Some would say that we’ve gained some ground. More than 150 tons were collected over 6 years. We are preventing ecological disasters, while at the same time educating our youth about recycling!”
“Now that we’re surrounded by electronic devices, batteries are becoming increasingly prevalent in our lives. Despite their tiny size, used batteries can do great harm. They must be kept out of landfills or sorting centres, because they can cause fires and runoff which is toxic for the environment. It’s inspiring to see the energy that Quebec’s youth has invested in this contest, which is aimed at creating awareness and contributing to prevention,” mentions Chada Ben Allal, Marketing Coordinator, Call2Recycle.
Grants totalling $11,750 to support environmental projects
For the fourth year in a row, the St. Patrick Elementary School, in Thetford Mines, has won the grand prize of $2,000. The students collected an impressive 2,906 kg of used batteries. Since it first participated in this contest, the school has collected a total of more than 18 tons!
Sainte-Luce Primary School, in Lower St. Lawrence, is the champion when it comes to engagement. Each of its 43 students collected an average of 34 kg of batteries, for a total of 1,463 kg. At the college level, the Granby CEGEP came in first with 217 kg.
The prizes awarded to the schools will be reinvested in environmental projects, like setting up sorting stations to avoid landfills, the creation of educational gardens, the purchase of recycling and compost bins and material to create awareness to environmentally sound waste management.
Winners’ reactions: Simple act, great impact for the schools and the environment
“I am proud of my students. They demonstrated their dedication towards environmental issues and by winning this $2,000 grant, they gave us the opportunity to reinvest once again in environmental initiatives at home. We’d like to plan an outing with the students to the Ecocentre or the battery sorting centre, to help them further understand waste management,” says David Piperno from the St. Patrick Elementary School in Thetford Mines (Chaudière-Appalaches).
“It was incredible to witness my students’ commitment to the environment. Although our school is small, with the help of our students, we were able to show what a community can accomplish when it sets its mind to it. With the $1,000 prize, we will be able to build an outdoor classroom with a view on the river,” proudly explains Josée Roussel of the Sainte-Luce Primary School, in the Lower St. Lawrence.
“We are on cloud nine! The contest impacted a large part of the student body and the $1,000 grant which we will be receiving will go towards initiatives aimed at conserving biodiversity. After creating a small island of biodiversity with various bee-forage plants last year, we plan on putting up educational signage to better inform the college community and build awareness about pollinating insects,” declared Christine Rodrigue of the Granby CEGEP in the Eastern Townships.
“At the Victoriaville CEGEP, it was the users of the Intellectual Disability Rehabilitation Center who collected the batteries. It was fantastic to see the stars in their eyes when they found out that their hard work had earned second place in the contest. We plan on using the $500 prize money to foster initiatives that will help green up our spaces,” explains Mélissa Pilon of the Victoriaville CEGEP in Central Québec.
There is no age limit for getting involved
ENvironnement JEUnesse, a leader in the field of environmental education, is in the middle of a recruitment campaign for its school activities, from childcare centres to universities. The early childhood setting can rely on the Childcare Centres Program recognized by the Ministère de la Famille. Primary and secondary schools can participate in the Matière Verte program which is supported by the Ministère de l’Éducation. CEGEPS and colleges have benefited from the Cégep Vert du Québec program for more than 15 years now. Finally, young adults between the ages of 15 and 29 can receive personalized guidance with regards to the environmental involvement. For more information, visit: www.enjeu.qc.ca.
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About ENvironnement JEUnesse
Founded in 1979, ENvironnement JEUnesse (ENJEU) is an organization in the field of environmental education whose goal is to make Québec’s youth aware of the environmental issues by offering programs that help them acquire the necessary tools and encouraging them to take action in their community. www.enjeu.qc.ca
Call2Recycle Canada, Inc. is a non-profit organization providing responsible stewardship for the safe collection, transportation and recycling of consumer batteries across Canada. Our mission is to responsibly manage batteries at the end of their useful life, in order to keep them out of landfills.
COPTICOM, Strategy and Public Relations 514-601-2073