DESPITE today's inclement weather, students from Scoil Inse Ratha in Little Island weren't deterred from participating in a beach clean up event.
Organised by Cork Harbour Waterkeepers, children from 6-12 years old donned their wellies and raincoats, braving the elements in a bid to clean up Cork’s coastline.
The initiative is part of Cork Harbour Waterkeepers education program ‘Solution To Pollution’ water literacy program where CHWK bring the connectivity of the plastic we buy to where it ends up on our shorelines and the harm it causes to the creatures we share the planet with.
The beach clean up was in recognition of Greta Thunberg speaking at the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York.
The 16-year-old environmental activist was the first speaker at the summit, which she described as a “crucial day”.
Students from Scoil Inse Ratha collected bags of plastic and rubbish and were educated by Gavin Murphy and Zach Sheehan, two CHWK volunteers about the danger of plastic to marine biodiversity.
Cork Harbour Waterkeepers were also joined by Klaudia Prys, Aishling Hahesy and Emmet Fitzpatrick from the Boston Scientific STEM environmental engineering program who let the kids assemble some of their technology and gave a talk about their zero carbon development before presenting them with goodie bags.
Cork Harbour Waterkeeper is an independent organisation funded and driven by concerned individuals.
Their mission is to provide a forum for public concerns and to fight for clean, swimmable, fishable waters, and safe drinking water.
Following the beach clean up, Noel Sheehan of Cork Harbour Waterkeepers expressed his admiration toward the next generation and their ambition to establish more sustainable practices:
“I am so grateful for the efforts of our volunteers that selflessly serve week after week so as to educate the next generation who are the vanguards of the future,'' he told The Echo.
“I have to say I am reminded of Robert Kennedy and his ‘Ripples of Hope’ speech which resonated with me when watching these kids.
“I am both humbled and inspired by the actions of the youth in tackling climate change. Watching what was achieved by Greta Thunberg from sitting outside her school to what happened last Friday around the world has to be a part of history.”