L.A. Students Celebrate Earth Day with Renewed Dedication to Reusing and Recycling

Earth Day celebrations will start early at 186 elementary schools

throughout Los Angeles as they celebrate the Go H2O! Earth Day

Festivals today. For the fourth year in a row, more than 28,000 students

are participating in the Go H2O! Challenge, a program developed

by LA’s BEST After School Enrichment Program and the American Chemistry

Council (ACC) to educate kids about the importance of healthy habits.

This program promotes healthy bodies by teaching children to drink water

instead of sugary drinks, and promotes a healthy planet by encouraging

the recycling of plastics and other materials.

Earth Day festivals include games like Water Bottle Bowling where

recyclable bottles will serve as bowling pins, a Recycling Relay Race

that uses recyclable materials, as well as a trivia game that reinforces

the importance of reducing waste, increasing recycling and developing

healthy habits at a young age.

The festivals will be celebrated at all 186 of the LA’s BEST sites

throughout Los Angeles. Assemblymember Felipe Fuentes as well as

representatives for Assemblymember Holly Mitchell, Assemblymember

Isadore Hall, and Senator Curren Price will be in attendance at

festivals in their districts, participating in the given site’s welcome

assembly and encouraging students to continue recycling and to maintain

healthy habits.

“The Go H2O! Challenge has been a welcome addition to our program

and our students are excited to celebrate Earth Day at these festivals,”

said Carla Sanger, LA’s BEST president and CEO. “Providing our students

with a creative way to learn about recycling and adopt healthy habits is

an important goal for us and we’re pleased the challenge continues to be

a success.”

As part of the 2012 Go H2O! Challenge, which launches this Fall,

more than 28,000 students will receive reusable plastic water bottles

made of recycled plastic. Coaches will receive educational packets to

help them teach students about recycling more plastics, choosing water

as a healthy choice, and using a reusable, recyclable container to help

reduce the consumption of materials.

“We’re honored to be helping LA’s BEST students and their families learn

about recycling plastic and reducing waste this Earth Day,” said Steve

Russell, vice president, plastics, American Chemistry Council. “The more

we can do to spread the word about recycling, the more committed we all

will be to keeping plastic out of our oceans and placing it in the

recycling bin where it belongs.”

Originally launched in 2009, the Go H2O! Challenge aims to

educate the LA’s BEST community about the importance of recycling

plastics and reducing waste while emphasizing how drinking more water

can promote a healthy lifestyle. Since its inception, ACC has provided

the LA’s BEST program with educational materials about recycling and

reusable plastic water bottles made from recyclable material. The

messages of the Go H2O! Challenge have sparked additional healthy

initiatives throughout the LA’s BEST network including the installation

of gardens and an increased availability of recycling bins at some of

the 186 sites.

LA’s BEST After School Enrichment Program is a partner in the statewide

recycling awareness campaign, Plastics. Too Valuable to Waste. RecycleSM.

The campaign launched in 2008 when representatives from the California

Department of Parks and Recreation, ACC and Keep California Beautiful

initiated a beach recycling program at State Parks sites in the Los

Angeles and Central Coast areas. The program soon spread to State Parks

beaches in San Diego, Monterey, Santa Cruz, the City of Brentwood and

the City of Woodland. For more information, see www.2valuable2waste.com.

LA’s BEST – Better Educated Students for Tomorrow – is a

nationally recognized after school education, enrichment and recreation

program serving more than 28,000 children with the greatest needs and

fewest resources throughout the City of Los Angeles. LA’s BEST After

School Enrichment Program provides a safe haven for children ages 5 to

12 at 186 elementary school sites each day during the critical hours

after school — at no cost to parents. Established in 1988, LA’s BEST is

a partnership including the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Unified

School District and the private sector. LA’s BEST is part of Beyond the

Bell, whose mission is to ensure that all children and youth in LAUSD

have access to high quality, safe and supervised academic, enrichment,

and recreation programs that inspire learning and achievement beyond the

regular school day. For more information, please visit www.lasbest.org.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading

companies engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the

science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make

people’s lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved

environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care®,

common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues,

and health and environmental research and product testing. The business

of chemistry is a $674 billion enterprise and a key element of the

nation’s economy. It is one of the nation’s largest exporters,

accounting for ten cents out of every dollar in U.S. exports. Chemistry

companies are among the largest investors in research and development.

Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members,

and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government

agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the

nation’s critical infrastructure. http://www.americanchemistry.com