Press Release: YIMBY Goes to Camp

Bethlehem, NH - As part of their USDA YIMBY! Yes In My Backyard! Grant, NRRA presented a grant-funded Trash On the Lawn Day (TOLD) at Copper Cannon Camp.

On August 6, NRRA Educators Cindy Sterling and Julia Le May assisted the campers at Copper Cannon Camp with a waste audit. Bags of typical camp trash were emptied onto the tarp while campers pulled out items that could have been recycled. Items were separated into different categories: food waste, plastic, aluminum, paper/cardboard and, of course, trash. Bags were weighed before and after the sort to produce a table of potential savings that could be realized by improved recycling.

Approximately 45 campers and counselors participated in this fun and educational activity. The groups were enthusiastic and had lots of questions.

Although this process, at a glance, may be stinky and messy, it’s a valuable experience for children to physically see what they are throwing away and analyze how they might be able to reduce the amount of trash that they produce. Though the Camp has a composting program, quite a bit of food waste was noted, as well as a good deal of plastic and paper. These observations sparked conversation about taking only what you need, investing in reusable containers in place of plastic bags, buying things in bulk rather than in small, individually wrapped containers, repurposing things and making smarter purchases with less packaging.

Copper Cannon Camp is grant-funded and allows children in low-income communities to experience the joys of a wilderness camp experience free of charge for a week during the summer. The Camp received a free Earth Machine composting bin for their contribution to this grant-funded research. The YIMBY grant is focusing on composting and a TOLD is an excellent way to gauge the volume of food waste that can be diverted from the landfill.

Special thanks to Camp Director Peter Christnacht and his Counselors for their support throughout the event.