Students from Raffles Girls’ School win Sustainable Schools Competition by Great Eastern and Zero Waste SG
Singapore, 4 November 2022 – As part of the completion of the 2022 edition of its Sustainable Schools Programme, leading regional insurer Great Eastern and local non-governmental organisation Zero Waste SG (ZWSG) today announced the winners of the Sustainable Schools Competition.
Sponsored by Great Eastern, 13 secondary school student teams took part in the competition, which took place from May to November 2022, to design sustainability projects in their respective schools. Projects with successful implementation outcomes will be consolidated and shared in reports and future resource kits as case examples to highlight effective behavioural changes which can be transferred, scaled up and used in other schools or community spaces in the long-term.
The judging was held on 2 and 3 November via virtual platform, where the teams presented their projects to a panel of judges. The judges were: Winnie Tan, Senior Vice President of Sustainability, Great Eastern; Tan Hui Leng, Executive Director of ZWSG; and Kwok Xiao Wei, Executive Manager, Public Engagement Group, National Environment Agency.
The five winning teams were announced at the prize presentation ceremony held at Great Eastern Centre today. They were:
- Gold prize: Raffles Girls’ School Team 2
- Project: Initiative aimed at creating a clothes donation drive and a mobile thrift store to educate students on fast fashion.
- Silver prize: St Patrick's School Team 2
- Project: Composting by feeding food waste to maggots and utilising the produced fertiliser for gardening in order to reduce the amount of food waste naturally.
- Bronze prize: Raffles Girls’ School Team 1
- Project: Named Moralist Mondays, the program focused on the usage of reusable packaging, plates and metal utensils in the school canteen to reduce plastic waste.
Commendation awards were conferred to Anglo-Chinese School (International) and Unity Secondary School.
Prizes are as follows: SGD$2,000 for the team that came in 1st place (Gold prize), followed by SGD$1,500 for 2nd place (Silver prize) and SGD$1,000 for 3rd place (Bronze prize). Commendation teams will receive SGD$500 each.
Amongst the projects were initiatives to create a clothes donation drive and a mobile thrift store to educate students on fast fashion; to promote the use of reusable containers and cups by providing discounts for purchases at school canteens; to compost leaf litter and food waste; as well as to raise awareness towards textile, paper and electronic waste.
Colin Chan, Managing Director of Group Marketing, Great Eastern said, “Through the Sustainable Schools Programme, we wanted to empower the youths to Reach for Great, and provide them with the knowledge and skills to work towards a zero-waste future. I understand that in the eight months, the students have shown an eagerness to be sustainability champions that create real change. We’re proud of all the students that took part in the programme and are excited to see some of the projects from the Sustainable Schools Competition implemented in schools and our community. At Great Eastern, we are committed to strengthening our resilience and facilitating a fair transition to a low-carbon future. We look forward to more opportunities to empower our youths and to support our nation in realising its Singapore Green Plan 2030.”
Steve Tunstall, Board Member of Zero Waste SG said, “The Sustainable Schools Programme has provided many students with the opportunity to launch interesting projects in their schools while armed with increased knowledge in sustainable practices. ZWSG endeavours to inspire and create new student leaders in sustainability for the future generation.”
Ong Chun Yeow, Eco Lead, Green Nudge and Mentor of the 2022 Sustainable Schools Competition said, “It has been my pleasure to mentor students in creating projects on sustainability for the second year. I am very heartened to be with them for eight months to appreciate their hard work and dedication to bringing the projects to fruition. It wasn't without challenges as the students took time out of their already packed school schedules. I wish all the students involved in the programme a wonderful time and that they feel empowered with hope for their future sustainable endeavours.”
Kicking off in April 2022, the Sustainable Schools Programme involved 10 schools across Singapore and was an 8-month holistic initiative aimed at building environmental awareness and advocacy among over 11,000 secondary school students as the nation moves towards a zero-waste future.
As title sponsor, Great Eastern supported the programme with SGD$120,000, which included funding for the participating teams to conduct their sustainability projects, the organising of upcycling workshops and other outreach activities, as well as the competition prizes.
During the year, Great Eastern’s staff and financial representatives volunteered to support the education outreach activities as facilitators for three upcycling workshops held at Yio Chu Kang Secondary School and Serangoon Garden Secondary School.
For more information on Great Eastern’s sustainability focus and initiatives across the region, please visit: https://www.greateasternlife.com/sg/en/about-us/sustainability.html
About Great Eastern
Founded in 1908, Great Eastern is a well-established market leader and trusted brand in Singapore and Malaysia. With over S$100 billion in assets and more than 13 million policyholders, including 10.5 million from government schemes, it provides insurance solutions to customers through three successful distribution channels – a tied agency force, bancassurance, and financial advisory firm Great Eastern Financial Advisers. The Group also operates in Indonesia and Brunei.
The Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited and Great Eastern General Insurance Limited have been assigned the financial strength and counterparty credit ratings of "AA-" by Standard and Poor's since 2010, one of the highest among Asian life insurance companies. Great Eastern's asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors Limited, is one of the largest private sector asset management companies in Southeast Asia.
Great Eastern is a subsidiary of OCBC Bank, the longest established Singapore bank, formed in 1932. It is now the second largest financial services group in Southeast Asia by assets and one of the world’s most highly-rated banks, with an Aa1 rating from Moody’s. Recognised for its financial strength and stability, OCBC Bank is consistently ranked among the World’s Top 50 Safest Banks by Global Finance and has been named Best Managed Bank in Singapore by The Asian Banker.
About Zero Waste SG
Zero Waste SG is a charity, non-governmental organisation leading the drive towards zero waste through education and advocacy. The organisation focuses on food waste, plastic disposables, recycling and organisational waste.