Tampa students celebrate Earth Day by emphasizing recycling

Earth Day
Aaliyah Lewis, center, was the first-place winner.

SPECIAL TO THE FLORIDA COURIER

Middle school students from Tampa Bay Christian Academy are well on their way to being the next generation of environmental leaders as they creatively displayed the importance of recycling in a recent art contest.

In honor of Earth Day, fifth, sixth and seventh-grade students at the Tampa school participated in a Recycling and Science Poster Contest organized by Covanta, operator of eight Energy-from-Waste (EfW) facilities in Florida, and Step Up For Students, a nonprofit that administers scholarships for Florida schoolchildren.

The contest asked students to visualize their commitment to recycling and science by depicting a theme, such as Energy-from-Waste, composting, recycling, electronic recycling and more. For its participation, the school received a $500 gift card to Staples to be used for school supplies.

THE WINNERS

Winners were honored for their outstanding design at a ceremony held on Earth Day.

  • First Place – Aaliyah Lewis, sixth grade
  • Second Place – Natalie Moreland, seventh grade
  • Third Place – Jasmine Morgan, sixth grade
  • Honorable Mention – Spencer Mitchell, fifth grade; Zoelee Lopez, fifth grade, Ester Pauline Martinez Bemal, seventh grade

Through Step Up For Students, Covanta has funded over 140 scholarships for deserving Florida students since 2016. The funds are donated through the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which serves lower-income children in Florida by allowing them to attend the school of their choice.

‘POSITIVE IMPACT’

“We are proud of the impact we’ve had on Florida schoolchildren through our contributions to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program and were thrilled to see the passion for the environment that each student displayed in their posters,” said Tom Murphy, client services manager for Covanta.

“It’s fun activities like this one that teach kids the importance of reduce, reuse and recycle. This also includes educating students about the fourth R, recovery, which ensures that we recover energy from waste that cannot otherwise be recycled.  

“We thank all of the students who submitted posters and encourage them to bring that same zeal and creativity to future opportunities to make a positive impact in their school and community,” Murphy added.

“Because of companies like Covanta, Florida’s lower-income students are provided the educational options they need to succeed,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “We are grateful for their partnership, generosity and commitment to helping students in their community.”

Covanta’s EfW operations provide sustainable waste management to Florida that generates enough renewable energy to power over 319,000 area homes and businesses.

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