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Local Schools have their say on the environment

18th June 2019

On 17 June, Three Rivers District Council welcomed 300 students and teachers from 16 local schools to take part in their annual youth council.

The students celebrated the completion of their amazing recycled art exhibition, which each school contributing to form a hugely impressive exhibition hosted until 8 July 2019 in Artistsmeet, Watersmeet, High Street WD3 1EH.  The students discussed their concerns about the environment and shared the projects that they have completed since they last met in October. Lots of innovative ideas emerged on how to cut down non-recyclable materials and enhance their local environments, which will be implemented by the schools. Declaring a climate emergency, as Three Rivers District Council have recently done, is also on the cards. The theatre was full and buzzing with enthusiasm and energy to make a difference, including a performance by Yorke Mead School, using an upcycled guitar to sing about the effect we have on the environment and what can be done to improve it.

Watford Recycled Arts Partnership led a fascinating session with the children creating pictures around an unfolding story, enabling the children to pause, think about the story and use this time to manage their own mindfulness. This is a great coping tool for children and young people and leads into the mental health theme for the Youth Council for the coming year. Good mental health is so important for young people and Natasha Penn shared her Relax Kids and Mindfulness skills with all the children in the audience.  Little Green Year 6 children were able to share the positive impact Natasha's work had in preparing them for the national tests. One child also reported that he used the 'hand petal' breathing technique before a big rugby match which his team went on to win!

Cllr Alex Michaels, Chair, Three Rivers Youth Council said' I'm so proud of the students. Seeing them working together and achieving so much is amazing, and the progress they are making on improving their local communities and environment is breath-taking. They are committed, passionate an enthusiastic and we've got a lot to learn from them!'.

Duncan Roberts, Headteacher, Little Green School "As a group of local primary schools, we aim to empower children to understand their power and their responsibility to make a positive difference to their local community and the wider world. The environment and mental health are vital and interconnected elements critical to our community's wellbeing and flourishing. I look forward to seeing what the children will do next!"

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