By Christina Leslie|Correspondent
Students at St. Raphael School have decided to “Go Green” as they learn and practice environmentally sound practices and serve God as young stewards of the earth.
The Trenton school’s club is comprised of about a dozen students from grades six through eight which involve the entire student body in various activities. President John Teague and vice president and secretary Libby Vernon, both seventh graders, are supervised by mathematics teacher and club moderator Karen Bart, who restarted the group when she arrived at St. Raphael School in Sept. 2011.
During its inaugural year, the “Go Green” members began a mixed paper recycling program, collecting the waste paper each week. This school year, the project has been enlarged to include full recycling in each classroom, a step encouraged by their new pastor and honorary club member Father John O. Chang.
The club also sponsored a campus-wide outdoor clean-up April 29 in honor of Earth Day. Each class of students in grades six to eight worked in 35 to 45 minute segments cleaning up trash around the campus despite the rainy weather. Members of the club worked for two periods, and officers for the entire time.
A poster contest with the theme “Celebrating God’s Earth” was held for grades two through five. Faculty, staff and “Go Green” members chose finalists and a winner from each grade based upon creativity, design, theme, and artistry.
Students are enthusiastic about their earth-friendly efforts. A trio of sixth grade members voiced the reasons they participate in the activities. “Being in ‘Go Green’ helps us to have the knowledge to do the right thing and recycle,” stated Maria Delpo. “We need to help the planet because we want to continue to live on it,” Amanda McLean added. “I think it’s important, because if we don’t fix it, the future generations will have to fix it,” concluded Grace Conboy.