Ysgol Clywedog’s Eco-Action Taskforce Group

Ysgol Clywedog students are celebrating after winning the top International Collaboration prize in the final of a global environmental reporting competition.

Clywedog’s Eco-Action Taskforce Group, which is made up of 25 students (year 7 through to 11), worked on their video entry to the International Collaboration category of the Young Reporter for The Environment (YRE) Competition together with their partner school, Colegio Enriquez Soler in Melilla in Spain.

Earlier this year we told you about their brilliant three-minute video called ‘Plastic Waste – An Intercontinental Problem’, so it’s great to see that it went on to win the top award.

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The video highlights the damaging and long-term impact of single use plastics on the environment.

Dr Christian Dunn from Bangor University, one of the country’s leading experts in micro plastics, and Helen Tandy, Chair, Chester and District Friends of the Earth, both lent their support to the video.

The shortlisted entries were assessed virtually by the competition’s International Jury, which was made up of experts from environmental journalism, corporate social responsibility, and education for sustainable development.

“A triumph”

Nicholas Brown, Head of Geography at Ysgol Clywedog, said: “Qualifying as a finalist after winning the nationals earlier this month, where they were up against 182 entries from 31 countries, was an amazing achievement in itself, so to win in the finals really is a triumph.

“At the start of the project, our students looked back at last year’s competition winner and were doubtful about doing a similar or better job, but they have proved to themselves that they absolutely can do it, and win!

“They have competed on the world stage against students from all backgrounds which is a real confidence boost and I have no doubt that this experience, and working in collaboration with overseas students, will stand them in good stead for their future.

“I’m looking forward to getting everyone back together and planning our entry for next year’s competition. We have developed a solid relationship with the students in Spain who are keen to continue working with us, so I am excited to see what we can achieve next.”

“Great journalistic talent”

Cllr Phil Wynn, Chair of Governors at Ysgol Clywedog and Lead Member for Education, said: “It’s fantastic that Ysgol Clywedog’s Eco-Action Taskforce Group went on win the International Collaboration category, together with their partner school Colegio Enriquez Soler, but having seen the quality of the video I’m not surprised at all. The students showed great journalistic talent and creativity to develop an excellent piece that promotes a really important message. It’s been a wonderful team effort, and they are very deserved winners. Well done to everyone involved.”

“A powerful video”

Cllr David A Bithell, Lead Member for Environment and Transport, said: “Massive congratulations to everyone involved in creating such a powerful video. Too much plastic is a global problem – damaging the environment and clogging up our oceans, and I’m pleased the students chose to highlight this issue. Our younger generation are taking it upon themselves to educate people about these important environmental issues, and this is helping Wrexham’s efforts to be at the forefront of recycling in Wales.”

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