Kreative Koala Kids tackle food waste

Kreative Koalas – Design a Bright Future Challenge helps young people solve some of the world’s biggest challenges by giving them ownerhsip of the solutions. Using the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals each school participating in Kreative Koalas is tasked with choosing one main goal to study. Our schools have selected a wide range of SDGs, illustrating the variety of issues important to primary school students.

Food waste is one of the world’s biggest wicked problems. As children we understand “show-and-tell”. This works in the case of wicked problems, too. One way to speed up best practice behavoir adoption is through demonstration.


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Continuing our series showcasing the 2019 Kreative Koalas artworks –  let’s have a look at their creative contributions that focus on SDG 12 Responsible Production and Consumption

Following the 2019 Kreative Koala trend of acknowledging local indigenous culture, students at Lochinvar Public School in the Hunter Valley created Kuluwayn, the Wonnarua name for koala. Kuluwayn is a striking koala combining the Wonnarua culture with recycling initiative Lids4Kids, which produces prosthetic limbs for disabled children using 3D printing.

We wanted to incorporate the fact that our school sits on Wonnarua country and that we are a Lids4Kids community collection point, so what better way to do it than paint Kuluwayn in traditional Aboriginal colours and decorate him with lids! His face and toenails have been specifically painted grey to reflect the original colour of koalas in the Australian bush. We have spread little clusters of lids on various parts of Kuluwayn’s body. Each section represents a symbol which is significant to our school.”

Those sections include Lochinvar Creek, meeting places, gardens, yarning circles and tracks and trails around the school.

He encourages people to bring lids to the school so we can reduce landfill and help others who are missing limbs.”

Colyton Public School, in western Sydney, drew upon Japanese influences to name their koala Mottainai, meaning ‘what a waste’ as they focussed on sustainable fashion.

We thought the name perfectly summed up our research about the monumental pollution caused by the textile industry and that as responsible consumers of fashion, we need to embrace the four R’s: reduce, reuse, recycle and respect.”

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Mottainai is decorated in pictures of sustainable fibres such as flax, mohair and feathers, and is draped in a woollen scarf made by the students. The koalas feet are chained in synthetic fabrics.

The smaller structure on the side focuses on the concept of fast fashion, starting with a stop-motion animation created with lego to tell the journey of a pair of blue jeans. It is supported by statistics about the impact of fast fashion and is created by using cut-outs from high glossy fashion magazines.”

‘Everyone can make a difference’ was the theme for Coco, the Kreative Koala from Bellbird Public School in the Hunter Valley, who portrays initiatives developed by the school to support responsible consumption and production.

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Coco’s head is decorated as a globe showing that it is everyone’s responsibility to think about and act upon making responsible decisions about our environment and all the people and animals of the world.

Coco’s ears are decorated with bowls of food. These represent us hearing the call to action from our homeless who require our assistance with nourishing food.

Coco’s eyes have glasses which we collected from our community to support people in third world countries who cannot afford or don’t have access to reading glasses.

Under Coco’s mouth is a toothbrush representing the terracycling of dental hygiene products we collected from our community to reduce landfill.

Across Coco’s body are items that can be effectively sorted into green waste, recycling or general rubbish, representing our commitment to reducing, reusing and recycling.”

Mega shoutout to our supporting partners helping young people solve tomorrow’s problems today

KK Sponsors


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