The Gleaner

Heritage Elementary Eco Club wants to save the environment

Fiona McKellar and Seren Caza Defferrard
Heritage Elementary School

The Heritage Elementary Eco Club is adopting a cheetah; symbolically, that is.

The club has been meeting every Monday since February to talk about environmental issues at the Huntingdon-based school and what students can do about them.

Around 16 students are part of the lunch-hour extra-curricular activity, which is led by teacher Méla Caza Pugh, who lived in the rainforests of Peru with her family.

The club members have created posters to encourage students to recycle, and have also put up posters within the building reminding students to save water.

“Students have always been interested in environmental issues and I feel it is a great way to empower our students for change,” said Miss Méla.

“I joined the Eco Club to try and help all of the animals and plants,” said one student in Grade 4. “Everyone can help out by cleaning up their environment and picking up garbage and recycling,” she added.

“I got to learn more about endangered animals,” said another student in Grade 3.


Eco Club members at Heritage Elementary enjoy planting marigold seeds for their cheetah fundraiser PHOTO Méla Caza Pugh


One of the main goals of the club is to symbolically adopt a cheetah. The cheetah was chosen because the animal is the school mascot. “I thought it would inspire our student body to become involved in the project,” said Miss Méla, of the decision to sponsor the fastest runner on land.

The club members have talked about cheetahs and have watched a documentary to learn more about the spotted feline.

In order to adopt the big cat, the club is planning a number of fundraisers, including a cookie sale and a plant sale. In mid-April the group met to plant marigold seeds for the fundraiser, which has so far brought in $110. The cookie sale will take place during the first week of June at the school and will offer cookies in the form of cheetah paws.

The symbolic cheetah will be adopted through the Cheetah Conservation Fund which is associated with the Research and Education Centre located in Otjiwarongo, Namibia. The remaining funds will be donated to the Friends of Parc Safari Foundation in Hemmingford.

The goal is to have the cheetah adopted by the end of the school year.

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