"We are not God. The Earth was here before us and was given to us," Pope Francis
Gibbons students and educators came together yesterday to celebrate Earth Day, joining the worldwide effort to focus attention on environmental issues and inspire ways to protect the planet we call home. The celebration has been an annual event at Gibbons for over ten years.
“Earth Day is an opportunity for us to be grateful for God’s creation…” said Gibbons Educator Gabi Burn, who teaches Environmental Science. “It is not only important to make everyone aware of how rare, unique, interconnected and complex our planet is, but to celebrate it as well.”
“Earth Day is an opportunity for us to be grateful for God’s creation…” said Gibbons Educator Gabi Burn, who teaches Environmental Science. “It is not only important to make everyone aware of how rare, unique, interconnected and complex our planet is, but to celebrate it as well.” Burn worked with the Green Team, the school’s student-led environmental club, on this year’s Earth Day. It included activities, exhibits, and demonstrations by school clubs - from health and art to biology, robotics, and space explorers - as well as other organizations.
Indeed, attendees watched as a drone took flight, and recycled aluminum cans were turned into earrings and leather strips became bracelets. They also learned how to create a native bee garden and how injured birds are brought back to health and ultimately released into the wild. And there were many other lessons in between.
Among those lessons were the benefits of supporting the local economy, as well as using such sustainable items as reusable lunch bags and water bottles, underscoring the call to end plastic pollution, which was the theme of the 2018 worldwide Earth Day celebration. Additionally, organizers gave out tickets that attendees could redeem for prizes that help reduce plastic consumption, like bamboo/biodegradable toothbrushes and stainless steel straws; or they could enter a raffle to win solar panel phone chargers.
Asked what she hoped students learned from the event Burn said: “I want students to be aware of and appreciate the environment. Sometimes people think we are separate or above – but in fact, we are PART of our environment and everything we do has an impact on it. I also want them to be aware of what they can do to help.”