Litterbugs and cigarette dumpers dismay Ross Intermediate kids
Children are disappointed at a mess left by litterbugs and cigarette butt dumpers in the Palmerston North Hospital grounds.
A group of Ross Intermediate School children from year 7 and 8 have been helping pick up rubbish on the grounds as part of an elective class.
Teacher Clare Mutch said the Community Outreach elective encouraged the children to do research and talk about helpful things they could do in the community.
They decided to pick up rubbish at a nearby place many people used.
On their first pick-up day last month they collected about 7 kilograms of rubbish between them, and on June 10, they bagged a bit more again, Mutch said.
The children were impressed there was not as much litter as they thought there could be in a big area, but were disappointed at the sorts of things people dumped.
"They are just blown away by cigarette butts, particularly, because it's a smokefree zone, and they are all over the place.
"They talked about the quandary of whether there should be bins for cigarettes, but that they are not meant to be smoking there in the first place."
Kayla Carne, year 7, said she was pleased to see the difference they could make.
"There were lots of different things; coathangers, padlocks, and whole tyres, there were lots of lolly wrappers.
"There was lots of cigarette butts; they are quite disgusting, they were either in big clumps or little bits all over the place."
Year 7 pupil Jade Angland said she liked helping, but thought people should think before they threw things on the ground.
"I was surprised how much Glad Wrap there was, and I found a lighter. It's disgusting, and what happens if a little kid finds it?"
She wanted people to get the message "that they shouldn't litter".
Mutch said the group would visit a nearby park next, to see if there was anything useful they could do there.
"They like the fact they've done something that makes a difference.
"If it's a little bit cleaner and tidier, then it's worthwhile."