Holly, Sarah-Cate, Lyle, Zack and Lacey with Cllrs McKay, Maitland, Cowan, Barton and McMahon

Dinnae forget your Caddy initiative launched by St Sophia’s Primary

Dinnae forget your Caddy is a fun 16-week initiative for Early Childhood Centres, Primary and Secondary Schools across East Ayrshire, which encourages whole communities to recycle their food waste.

The initiative began on Monday 5 February and will run until the middle of June. It aims to raise awareness of the importance of food recycling at home. Currently, under 50% of households recycle their food waste.

The younger children and young people have been asked to name and decorate their food caddy at home and register their chosen name with the Climate Change team, while young people from our secondary schools have been asked to create their own school campaign to encourage food waste recycling at home. Regardless of age, each week their food waste caddy is presented for collection and they are entered into a recycling monthly prize draw.

Project mascot, Cairey the Caddy, has also set children and young people a special challenge to find a caddy buddy in their street, which will help increase the Community Caddy Count in each area of East Ayrshire.

The Climate Change team has shared how many caddies are recycled during week one and will share the Community Caddy Count again at the end of week 16, when it is hoped lots more people will be recycling their food waste.

Councillor Elaine Cowan, Councillor Jim McMahon, Councillor Graham Barton, Councillor Clare Maitland and Councillor Maureen McKay, visited St Sophia’s Primary to find out more about the initiative and were warmly welcome by school ambassadors Murphy and Caoihme.

Sarah-Cate, Holly and Zack from P6 gave a fascinating presentation about the importance of recycling food waste and the negative impact food waste has on the environment. They explained the process of anaerobic digestion which converts food waste into energy and had some great facts, like one banana when converted into electricity could charge a mobile phone…twice!

They did a wonderful job encouraging everyone in attendance to get involved in the Dinnae forget your Caddy initiative before the cheer team – Lyle from P2 and Lacey, Robyn and Holly from P6 – performed an incredibly upbeat dance to the song - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Councillor Elaine Cowan, Spokesperson for Education, and Children and Young People said: “A big thank you to Head Teacher Mrs Heron for inviting us to learn more about the Dinnae forget your Caddy initiative and to hear directly from the children and young people about the importance of food waste recycling.

“The initiative has been created by Principal Teacher for Climate Change and Active Travel, Vicky McWilliam and the Climate Change team in partnership with Cleaner Communities. It is just week three of the initiative but the enthusiasm of the children and young people was infectious, I looking forward to seeing some positive results in June.”

Councillor Graham Barton, Spokesperson for Planning, Property and Environment said: “What a great visit to St Sophia’s. The enthusiasm from the children and young people was fantastic and their presentation on the importance of recycling food waste was really excellent. It explained clearly why we need to recycle to avoid harmful gasses being created in landfill and also pointed to the importance of reducing food waste to help save local families money as the average family is throwing away £38 a month in food waste.

“We are only in week three of Dinnae forget your Caddy but we have already had 140 requests for new food caddies, which is great news. I am hoping that we will see marked increases in the number of people recycling their food waste at home by June.”