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2016.04.1
Staying Green, Joining Hands with the Societies

A special thanks goes out to all the student societies who showed support to make their counter and decoration more sustainable during the Promotion Period. Not only did we reduce resources significantly, but we were also able to collect more than 1,000kg of cardboard and materials for recycling.

The Green Society Promotion Awards were aimed at rewarding student societies who demonstrated outperforming sustainable actions during the promotion period. This year, by collaborating with SAO, FMO and SU, Green Representatives from each student society learned about strategies and techniques to make their promotions greener. The participating societies were required to submit checklist and had assessment interviews with the representatives from the Sustainability Unit. In all, 25 societies signed up for the competition, and congratulations go to top performing societies:

Champion - Southeast Asian Students’ Society

Runners Up -Yo-hoo and International Cuisine Society

Special Prizes:

Excellence in using recycled materials - Mathematics Students’ Society

Most eco-friendly Souvenirs - Southeast Asian Students’ Society

Most creative eco-friendly Promotion - Astronomy Club

Most popular choice - Yo-hoo

The newly-formed Southeast Asian Students’ Society demonstrated an effective and eco-friendly promotion to let HKUST students learn more about the cultures of Southeast Asian countries. They designed their booth with simple decorations and reused materials, while eliminating unnecessary promotional materials. It was wonderful to see that the cabinet members also tried to raise the students’ awareness about the endangered species of Proboscis Monkey and the importance of conserving the environment. The members carried snacks from their home countries in their luggage and distributed them during the promotion. 

"We included green sustainability elements into our promotion, because as residents of the earth we felt like it was our responsibility to look after it. Southeast Asia is also an area where nature thrives, but due to urban expansion the natural habitats of many animals are being destroyed, so we wanted to raise awareness for that."

--- By Southeast Asian Students’ Society

As runner-up winners, both Yo-hoo and International Cuisine Society used recyclable and reusable materials to make their decorations. Yo-hoo estimated the distribution quantity of leaflets to make sure that no wastes were left. Normally, student societies would try to grab the attention of students by changing the counter games throughout the promotion period which may produce a lot of waste. But Yo-hoo flexibly re-designed their game with the same materials to create a new fun game for members. International Cuisine Society also played a good role model in passing their spirit and usable materials to the next cabinet; they reused all the posters, banners and storage box from the last cabinet.  

“As a club with activities involving in nature exploration, we want to bring the green elements into our promotion to reduce waste as well as spreading green messages to students. In the future, we will keep on promoting sustainability to our next cabinet by setting a good example through our acts to show how we can achieve the goal.”

--- By Nature Club

Another highlighted society that creatively adopted sustainability principles was the Mathematics Students Society. Glue and staples are common tools for sticking materials together for decoration, but this society broke the tradition by replacing them with “cheap” Tapioca Starch. Tapioca starch is an eco-friendly and biodegradable adhesive, which is originally extracted from Manioc plant and commonly used in thickening food. This green action could cut down the promotion cost and reduce environmental impacts. Why not consider it as an alternative for your next event?

During the promotion period, the Sustainability Unit engaged with around 30 student helpers to assist the societies to separate their preparation materials in student common rooms, dismantle and separate their big decorations and counter materials into categories of plastic, paper, cardboards, metal and foam board. By completing the recycling, societies would receive the refund of cleaning and recycling deposit. Not only recycling waste, the activity also raised the students’ awareness about the importance of saving resources at source. In total, over 1,000 kg of materials were collected for recycling.

 

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Related Links

Green Society Promotion Awards
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Recycling Activities of Promotion Period
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