Toynbee’s Climate Cops bid to shorten food miles


Members of Toynbee's Climate Cops team will be growing food for their canteen

Students from Toynbee School, Eastleigh have been celebrating the news that they have been selected as finalists in npower’s Climate Cops SOS, an initiative designed to motivate the UK’s greenest teens into turning their passion for the environment into a positive campaign for the Toynbee and Eastleigh area.

A team of ten 11 to 14-year-olds from the Bodycoats Road school were chosen from entries across the UK to participate in the programme.

This Thursday the pupils and teachers will be taking part in an exclusive workshop at London Zoo.

Hosted by Xtra Factor and former Blue Peter presenter Konnie Huq, the workshop is designed to help springboard the youngsters’ green ideas into real actions.

Npower launched its search for the UK’s most passionate green teenagers back in April, when students were asked to identify an environmental issue which affects their community.

The Toynbee team impressed judges with their entry film, which showed they aim to reduce food miles through the creation of a sustainable forest garden. So far they have carried out a survey of the school grounds to pinpoint the best location for the garden – i.e. Best sunlight; best protected etc. They have selected their site and commenced research into the kind of plants and foods they will grow.

Excited team members Sam Emirali and Caryl Hunter explained why it was important for local people to reduce their food miles:

“Food that has been grown abroad, say Africa, has travelled by boats and planes being shipped from country to country” explained Sam “it has to travel thousands of miles resulting in increased Co2 emissions”

“We can reduce food miles by using some of the food that we grow in the canteen so that we can reduce our carbon footprint as a school” added Caryl.

Caryl also explained how the work they did on the project was linked to work on sustainability which forms part of their geography curriculum.

The training at London Zoo is just the first of many sessions to help inspire and motivate the pupils as they venture forward with their green projects and the students are also looking forward to a weekend away in the Lake District

Furthermore, the school, along with nine other finalist teams will receive a starter fund of £1,000 from npower to help bring their project to life.

Npower will be awarding members of the runners up team £150 each towards a bicycle while each of the winners will be presented with a netbook – a prospect which both Caryl and Sam agree would be “Really good!”.

Toynbee school site