Year 5 pupils from Kenmore Park Junior School in Kenton, Harrow, brought the fight against plastic waste to the heart of power this week.
This Wednesday, 15th June, the pupils lobbied local MP Mr Bob Blackman to take action against plastic pollution on The Big Plastic Count’s Youth Empowerment Day.
After learning about the role of MPs and why talking to your MP is important, the pupils created a plastic themed collage to give to their representatives then set to work lobbying their MP for more action on plastic waste in a face to face meeting in Parliament.
The pupils from Harrow joined students from nine other schools from across the country who traveled to London to raise the alarm to their MPs on the UKs plastic waste problem.
The trip to parliament came after pupils took part in The Big Plastic Count, a citizen science project launched by Greenpeace UK and non-profit organisation Everyday Plastic held between the 16th and 22nd of May this year.
The count saw over 100,000 households, schools, community groups and businesses across the UK count their plastic packaging waste, record the different types they throw away and enter their results into the campaign website.
The campaign aims to convince the government to take more action to cut plastic production, ban plastic waste exports and transition to refill and reuse alternatives which are affordable, accessible and appropriate for all.
Rebecca Thomas, the Head of Year 5 at Kenmore Park Junior in Kenton said: “It was a phenomenal life changing day for the children, who are now more equipped to tackle the plastic crisis not only locally, but also nationally.
“There was a real buzz amongst the children as they met with their local MP for Harrow East, Mr Bob Blackman, who was actually very knowledgeable and supportive. We are excited to continue our journey supporting Greenpeace and other organisations tackling global issues that will negatively impact our future generations.”
Maja Darlington, plastics campaigner at Greenpeace UK said: “It’s hugely inspiring seeing these young people get involved and push their MPs for change. Their hard work and enthusiasm has really brought home the problems around the plastic crisis to some of the most powerful people in the country.
“Plastic waste is everywhere – the problem is huge and the challenge of fixing it can feel overwhelming. But as these students told their MPs, there are solutions out there – we just need our politicians and big businesses to grasp them.
“Whether that’s moving to refill and reuse products that are accessible to all or introducing targets to cut plastic production, by taking the right actions we can finally get a grip on plastic waste.”