Eckington girl organises litter pick following call for better education on plastic pollution in schools

A girl from Eckington has organised a litter pick to help clean up her community following a call for better education on plastic pollution in schools.

By Alana Roberts
Thursday, 27th June 2019, 11:43 am
Updated Thursday, 27th June 2019, 11:43 am
Millie Cardwell, 12, and her mum Sarah
Millie Cardwell, 12, and her mum Sarah

Millie Cardwell, 12, from Eckington, wrote to Prime Minister Theresa May over a year ago regarding plastic pollution in our oceans and how she could help.

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Millie Cardwell, 12, and her mum Sarah

The former Eckington Junior School student, who was part of the pupil parliament at the time, also spoke of the need for more recycling bins in her community. 

However, when Millie moved to secondary school and her mum Sarah Cardwell, 36, became a a Community Trade ambassador for the Body Shop at home, the pair delved deeper and began learning about plastic together.

Sarah said: “I knew Millie was passionate about plastic, recycling and our environment which was one of the reasons I applied for the community trade role.

“She wrote the letter off her own back and was genuinely upset about plastic pollution. When she moved to Eckington School she became busy trying to settle into a new environment, but it has always been in the back of her mind.”

Millie with her letter to PM Theresa May

Together both Millie and Sarah began a petition calling on the Department for Education to introduce compulsory purposeful plastics lessons in schools.

The call came after the Education Secretary Damian Hinds urged schools to get rid of single use plastics – such as plastic bags, straws and bottles – by 2022. 

Millie said: “I think all children should be taught about plastics and the dangers it can cause. If children learnt about it in school we could recycle plastic more. So I set up a petition with my mum.”

The pair want all children in the UK to be educated about the changes to plastic use, from three-years-old through to 18. 

They also want the lessons to involve information on recycling, including how to make creative artwork and the environmental and financial benefits it may bring.

Together, the duo have arranged a litter pick within the Eckington community to help rid the streets of plastic, which will take place on Saturday, June 29. 

Attendees are asked to meet in the Eckington Leisure Centre car park at 10am and Sheffield Council will be providing the equipment.