GPS completes a year
Since launching on World Environment Day last year, the Green Programme for Schools (GPS) has seen major reductions in the electricity and water consumptions among participating schools.
The GPS is the environmental initiative of Msheireb Properties in association with Qatar Today magazine and supported by the Supreme Education Council. Since its launch on June 5, 2011, GPS has seen the participation of around 25,000 students from more than 28 schools.
GPS is the first schools-based environmental awareness campaign in Qatar that aims to reach, inspire and reward students and schools by meaningfully engaging the youth and inculcating in their minds the importance of building green equity. The first phase of the programme had schools receive the GPS branding as Mission 20 coordinators visited each participating school, strategically placing creative stickers carrying the message of water and energy conservation as well as pledge boards all over the school campus. With the completion of the brand activation phase, the GPS moved into the next phase-the GPS monitoring stage. Based on pre-determined criteria, the participating schools were monitored and evaluated for a year on water & electricity conservation, paper recycle and reuse initiatives by GPS involving officials from Msheireb Properties, Qatar Today Magazine, Qatar Green Building Council and other technical members. The best performing schools in these categories will be awarded the ‘Eco School of the Year’.
According to Mission 20 coordinators, the schools have reported major reductions in their electricity and water consumptions and have also implemented several eco-friendly initiatives to engage their students in green practices. “It seemed a little difficult in the beginning to draw the attention of more than 28 participating schools towards the goal of GPS, but eventually we made it a success in achieving our target. The schools showed great interest as it was a unique programme in Qatar which had a large number of schools participating in it. The schools were enthusiastic during the implementation of the programme,” says Amanat Solanki, Founder and Chairman, Mission 20-Kainat Foundation.
“The schools’ campuses looked colourful with the posters and pledge boards that carried the campaign’s message and was a great way to attract the attention of students. Our volunteers worked hard in coordinating with the schools throughout the campaign. Mission20 is proud to be the activation partners for GPS.”
Box: Top Five
Based on electricity and water metre readings, the top five schools that have minimised their consumption through the year are:
1. Hafsa School for Girls
2. Ali Bin Abi Taleb Independent School
3. Al Arqam Academy For Girls
4. International School London Qatar
5. Gharnata Girls Preparatory School for Girls