In conjunction with its 20th Anniversary celebrations, Trienekens (Sarawak) Sdn. Bhd recently organized an inter-school level environmental programme called the Greenovation School Programme for schools in Kuching City which took off in June this year.
Under the programme, schools were invited to participate in three sustainability-themed competitions namely the Greenscape Upcycling Competition, the Young Greenovators Upcycling Competition and the Green Runway Competition. The programme’s objectives are to provide a platform for school students to develop innovative and creative ideas based on the 3R (reduce, reuse and recycle) concept and ultimately, create better awareness about environmental sustainability.
About 44 teams from 25 schools participated in the competitions which were divided into primary and secondary school categories. Students and teachers were asked to incorporate creative, practical and sustainable re-use of waste or discarded materials into the landscaping of their school compound and in the creation of upcycled products and costume designs.
Winners of the competitions were announced at a special prize presentation ceremony on 10 August 2019 at tHe Spring Shopping Mall where YB Datuk Dr. Sim Kui Hian, the Minister of Local Government and Housing was represented by Mr Tan Kai, Political Secretary to the Chief Minister as the Guest of Honour. Winners were presented with cash prizes of up to RM1500 as well as trophies and certificates. Contestants also displayed their designs and products along with special school performances and a showcase by the Green Runway contestants.
In his speech Mr. Tan Kai commended all the students and teachers for their participation and stressed that greater involvement is needed from the young generation to help promote sustainability among their peers.
“This programme is in line with the Ministry of Local Government and Housing Sarawak’s own efforts to uplift the well-being of the community and environment through greater awareness and persistent education particularly about environmental management,” said Mr. Tan Kai.
According to Trienekens’ Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Stephen Chin (詹運傑), all three competitions highlighted the importance of sustainable practices by transforming of discarded materials into items which have renewed functionality and purpose and thus, minimizing the impacts of waste on the environment and conserving non-renewable natural resources.
“Through this programme, we are encouraging school students to generate innovative and creative ideas on how we can reduce, reuse and recycle our waste while promoting awareness on sustainability through the creation of upcycled products or designs that can help to minimize our environmental footprint and conserve our precious natural resources,” said Chin. “As modern day consumers, we tend to get rid of the items we no longer need without much thought about the impacts we may cause to the environment. Some of the items need not necessarily end up as waste but given a new purpose, it can have renewed lifespan.”
A special feature of the Greenovation School Programme is a mentorship segment where both students and teachers have the opportunity to learn and get advice from industry experts. For this, Trienekens collaborated with Swinburne University of Technology, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS) and Lim Kok Wing Institute of Creative Technology. Trienekens also worked with government agencies such as the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, Kuching North City Hall (DBKU), Padawan Municipal Council (MPP), Serian District Council (SDC), Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) Sarawak and Department of Environment (DOE) Sarawak who formed members of the competitions’ judging panel.