30 July 2020
In early March, our Eco-Committee (the DECOs) were delighted that the British Standards Institute invited Downe House, along with two other schools, to participate in a ‘Horizon Scanning Day’ venture. The day began with an introduction from Dr Manuela Gazzard, who gave an overview of the BSI’s role and an insight into the United Nation’s Sustainability Goals (of which many BSI leaders have signed up to). The DECOs were then invited into a boardroom to present to key leaders about what young people feel are the most pressing issues facing the environment today. The DECOs presented on a number of topics after asking our full student body about their main concerns through a full-School survey.
Whilst taking an interest in all the matters covered by the DECOs, they were particularly keen to hear about ideas around tax incentives for textiles companies that recycle their water, adopting a more streamlined approach to carbon labelling on food packaging, and the development of community gardening.
As a way of thanks for our attendance, the BSI kindly offered a generous donation of £1500 to an environmental charity of our choice. The DECOs spent time looking at local and national charities and were delighted to offer the donation to a charity within our local community, the Kennet and Avon Canal Trust.
Downe House already has links with the Kennet and Avon Canal Trust, particularly during our Upper Fourth volunteering days when the Trust have kindly allowed our students to volunteer with them at their sites. We are delighted to be able to offer this donation to the Trust and we know it will be of huge value to this local charity that is close to our hearts.
Chris Bolt, Trustee and Treasurer, spoke on behalf of the Trust:
“Thank you so much for thinking of The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust to receive this donation. As you can imagine, our income has been hit hard by the Coronavirus pandemic, with our Crofton site closed and all our boat trips suspended. We are therefore be very pleased to accept this donation.“