Students Learn About Their Environment

Last year, Massport and Radio Disney partnered with several East Boston Public Schools to bring environmental awareness to third grade students in the neighborhood.

As part of the program Massport challenged the students in each 3rd grade class in participating schools to participate in a bottle cap recycling program as a way to shape environmental awareness.

The James Otis Elementary School collected the most caps with 680 pounds and won $2,500 for educational purposes courtesy of Massport.

Last Tuesday, Massport unveiled a sculpture at Logan Airport made by Artists for Humanity that used the bottle caps the Otis School students collected. During the Earth Day ceremony at Logan the students, now in the 4th grade, were invited to help unveil the sculpture.

“We are pleased to play a small role in giving the award-winning students of the Otis School a chance to celebrate Earth Day in East Boston,” said Massport CEO Thomas Glynn.

The four runner-up schools in Eastie received $300 gift cards courtesy of Framingham-based Staples, Inc. Those schools were the Curtis Guild School, Patrick J. Kennedy School, Hugh R. O’Donnell School, and Mario Umana Middle School Academy.

During the course of the competition, Go Green Solutions, Inc. of South Grafton partnered with Massport to provide each school with recycling containers that the students decorated with their own unique environmental messages.

“We’re happy to be a partner in this effort to bring a hands-on environmental awareness project to the classrooms,” said Go Green Solutions Jim Kelly. “We believe everyone can contribute to a cleaner planet and getting the message out to a young audience can help make a huge impact on our local communities.”

All bottle caps collected by the students were then donated by Massport to Artists for Humanity to make the sculpture that was unveiled last week. For twenty years, Artists for Humanity has been empowering and employing Boston teens in a uniquely intensive program of arts, creativity and enterprise.

Massport announced the winners during an event sponsored by Disney Channel Next Big Thing performers. The Next Big Thing television series introduces young recording artists and offers them national exposure to fans that then vote for their favorite artist. Students from the five participating schools were invited to the Eastie concert and had the opportunity to meet the performers.

“This program is an ideal example of how a community can come together to support education, sustainability, and the arts,” said Amy Shanler, director of community relations for Staples, Inc. “We hope Staples’ support for the recycling program will reinforce this positive change and ultimately have a lasting impact on these youth.”

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