Pupils and Rotary join forces to clean up town
When Rotary International added a seventh cause to its list, protecting the environment, Kirkcudbright Rotary Club members decided to rise to the challenge.
In April this year, club members planted around 100 tress at the back of the town’s swimming pool. They have a further 1220 trees yet to plant and will be targeting the Castledykes area in November.
Members have also been busy sowing wild flowers, beach cleaning and litter picking. However, with such a big mission on their hands, they’ve now enlisted the help of some of our youngest citizens too.
The club already has strong links with teachers and students at Kirkcudbright Academy, fostered over the last six years.
That partnership has now expanded, with S3 pupils planting wild flowers near the skate park and other locations close to the school and S6 students signed up to do regular litter picks.
With so many trees yet to plant, it is hoped the Academy’s partner primary schools will also join in the tree planting scheme.
Former teacher Paul Tebay, the Rotary Club’s youth service convenor, is delighted the youngsters have signed up to help with the mission.
He said: “The S6 pupils are tremendously well organised and keen to help, setting up rotas for litter picking in small groups around the town on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, with a particular focus on the High Street, Moat Brae, Harbour Square, Gas Lane, the Harbour Marina, Dee Walk, the Park and the Isle.
“They will also respond to other hot-spot locations if they are made aware of them.
"As a former teacher, I often think young people are unfairly criticised – this will help people see them in a different light, working with us to improve the town and getting the credit they deserve.”
Dumfries and Galloway Council has provided pupils with litter pickers, gloves and bags whilst the Rotary Club has provided them with high visibility jackets.
Within the 1320 trees being planted in the town, 420 were donated by the Woodland Trust for schools.
Rotary Club member Chris Ingram, a retired arboricultural cosultant, hopes to visit the primary schools to assist them with tree planting and working towards their Green Flag Awards.