Young people take part in sustainable action

Published: 18 March 2024

An image of young people from schools attending a session at the council chamber with councillors presenting their sustainable ideas

Young students are being invited to support a new council initiative to tackle environmental issues with sustainable solutions.

The Schools’ Sustainability Project aims to encourage awareness of local ecological concerns, support schools to take practical action and introduce young people to the workings of the council.

At the Civic Centre in Folkestone, 23 young people aged between 7-10 from Elham Church of England Primary School, Sellindge Primary School and The Churchill School in Hawkinge took part in a trial for the programme.

Chair of Folkestone & Hythe District Council, Cllr Abena Akuffo-Kelly gave the attendees a brief introduction to the council chamber and a small insight into what full council meetings can be like.

Pupils spent time considering issues affecting the local environment and presented projects on their sustainable solutions that could not only help improve their surroundings but the planet too.

Cllr Stephen Scoffham, Cabinet Member for Climate, Environment and Biodiversity, who devised the project said: “The aim of this project is to engage with young people and support them in considering sustainable efforts but also illustrate how local government is involved in that process.

“Our hope is that by giving the students a voice, that their words can be heard in helping us create a more sustainable future for the district as a whole.”

Children from each school will have access to a supporting grant of between £300 to £500 to pay for resources and equipment. This is being funded by the ward budgets scheme which is available to all district councillors to support their local communities.

Once the students have refined their projects, they will have the opportunity to implement them during the summer term. 

The intention is to use this trial as a call to action for other schools to introduce similar initiatives and get students more engaged in sustainable ideas for their community.

For anyone looking to get involved in the Schools’ Sustainability Project, contact