There are 30 000 cars in St. Vincent and no place to recycle car tires.

In St. Vincent we are likely to produce more than 100 000 used tires per year. The two landfills in Belle Isle and Diamond do not accept use tires and people often go into the forest and burn them or dump them in the ocean.

Tires take hundreds of years to decompose. When tires are burnt toxic smoke is released into the air we breathe. What to do?

The Climate Compliance Conference decided in March 2014 to create a practical project where many people could take part in reducing pollution by reusing tires. We tried various ways to reuse old tires.

In February 2014 we decided to build a playground at Fitz Hughes Government School made by recycling material. The main goal was to show an example of the importance of recycling and to show that it is possible to make something useful from garbage.

We started our project by sharing the tasks at hand;
- one group had to plan the next two weeks of the project,
- one group researched what kind of playground elements we wanted to build
- one group was making a list of materials needed.

We realized that the only spending of money we needed was for transporting the tires to the school and some screws, bolts and tools. Nothing expensive!

It took us one week to build the playground as an activity after school time and to our surprise it went very fast because a lot of kids were excited and helped out.

We built a long jump of wood boards that we had in our workshop and we took sand from the beach. Then we built two "motorcycles", a swing and a tower on a pole we got donated from VINLEC (St. Vincent's Electrical Company) and finally we build a big climbing wall.

The time with the kids was amazing and building the playground was a huge success because we reached our goal as parents and kids came to join and the feedback was very positive and enthusiastic.

People say the playground looks nice and are surprised that it can be so beautiful being made of "waste" and even better, the children respect it and take care of it because they took part in building it.

“Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much” Helen Keller.

Written by Laetitia - The Climate Compliance Conference February 2014.