By Chaleena Suvanpratum, Joshua Macdonald and student volunteers (Aishwarya Nair, Amina Qistina Bt Mohd Idris, Arthur Chong, Chua Jun Wei, Irdina Jamal, Katherine Nisha De Rozario, Kooi Choy Mun, O Kai Zhou, Sachman Singh Ohinsha, Thisheelen a/l Kanesan and Trishwin Kaur Dhaliwal)
On the 20th of October 2019, thirteen UKT Year 2 law students organised a community service project to gain knowledge and raise awareness on the importance of recycling, reusing and reducing waste (3R’s) towards a more sustainable environment.
Headed by Chaleena Suvanpratum and Joshua Macdonald, the team of student volunteers made their way to the Community Recycle Centre in ss17, Subang Jaya and the Bukit Jelutong Community Recycling Centre.
According to Chaleena Suvanpratum, volunteering at the recycling centre made her realise that not all types of plastic can be recycled – “plastic that cannot be bent or stretched are non-recyclable, for example, egg cartons made of plastic, files, and plastic used for wrapping or storing electrical items.”
“The proper way to recycle trash is to separate items by the type of material – bottle caps need to be separated from plastic bottles, and coloured papers need to be separated from white papers as they are worth a different value. In fact, the Department of Environment helps us to identify e-waste collection points in every state in East Malaysia”, she adds.
Another student volunteer, Arthur Chong said, “It’s a very enlightening experience as I’m now more self-conscious about recycling and sorting out trash…by taking just 5 minutes to separate our own trash and placing it in the respective recycling bins, we are doing something good!”.
Ms. Jeanette Loo, a resident of Bukit Jelutong, complimented the students for organising such a project to create greater awareness among the younger generation – “….at least when you grow older and have a household of your own, then you can teach the future generation. Global warming is terrible and everybody ought to do something about it”.
Likewise, Puan Norzilawati, the owner of the recycling centre in ss 17, urged students and the general public to be mindful of separating trash and only deliver recyclable items as a common concern is the additional cost borne by the centre for waste disposal bins. The centre also provides an incentive to encourage Malaysians to recycle waste through the sale of recyclable items at a nominal price.
*Feature image by Chaleena Suvanpratum (Volunteers with BAC’s UKT Year 2 law students, O Kai Zhou (middle) Chaleena and Aishwarya Nair).