Lapstone Public students recycle old toothbrushes

Students from Lapstone Public School are diverting the Blue Mountains community’s oral care waste from landfill for their chance to win one of five recycled community garden sets.

Not going to landfill: Packaging, old toothbrushes and used containers are being collected by students at Lapstone Public School.

Not going to landfill: Packaging, old toothbrushes and used containers are being collected by students at Lapstone Public School.

The Colgate Community Garden Challenge invites pre-, primary and secondary schools nationwide to collect all brands of oral care waste and send it to TerraCycle, who will give the waste a second life by creating new products. The move is part of a national recycling competition run by Colgate, Chemist Warehouse and global recycling pioneers TerraCycle which sees students collect old toothpaste tubes, used toothbrushes and floss containers for recycling.

Gabrielle Ross, a parent from Lapstone Public School, said the competition, which runs until the end of October, is a great way to get students involved in sustainability and responsible waste disposal.

“At Lapstone Public School, we promote and educate students and the community about sustainability and the impact on our environment,” Mrs Ross said.

She added a recycled community garden set would complement Lapstone Public’s sustainability ethos, which incorporates gardening, composting, recycling and local Indigenous culture into its lessons about the environment.

“The community garden set would promote the relationships our school has with our community and foster the continued respect and connection we have with our environment,” Mrs Ross said.

Other members of the community are welcome to drop off their old toothbrushes to the school office on Explorers Rd, Glenbrook to help the school in the challenge. The school has already sent back 4kg of waste.

Five recycled community garden sets will be awarded to five schools, with each set including three garden beds, two custom-made benches, one rubbish bin and one sign, plus a $500 gardening voucher to buy seeds and plants. Besides showing how recycled materials can be used as a sustainable alternative to virgin plastic, the sets are designed to promote gardening and healthy eating among schools. Schools also have the chance to win a pack of 60 upcycled pencil cases made from recycled toothpaste tubes.

Jean Bailliard, TerraCycle Australia general manager congratulated Lapstone’s efforts to date.

“At TerraCycle, we want to eliminate the idea of waste and a perfect place to start is with schools. We want to thank the kids at Lapstone Public School for their amazing recycling work, and wish them all the best in the competition.”

Schools can visit to join the competition and to watch their competition ranking on a digital leaderboard.