The kids at Stratford Community Childcare Centre are gaining hands-on composting experience thanks to the Stratford District Council’s waste levy fund.
Teacher Robin Mischeski says the centre received $7030 through the Stratford District Council waste levy fund in February. The funds have covered the cost of a worm farm, a twin compost tumbler and a bokashi bucket, a small concealed container used for fermented composting.
“We now have our worm farm and twin compost tumbler up and running. We’re about to start using the bokashi bucket.”
She says it was important for the centre to use local businesses where possible.
“We brought our worm farm from Don and Margaret Oakes. They’re a local couple with worm farm experience. They have local knowledge and are happy to help us if we need support or guidance with the worms.”
The centre now has a three-tier composting system with each step being a learning experience for the kids, says Robin.
“The children are hands-on with the tumbler as they can turn the bin. They can see the worms breaking down our food scraps and they will also be hands-on with the worm casting and worm wee used to make fertiliser. We can recycle everything except citrus.”
The compost will be used in the tunnel house.
“It’s part of the cycle. What’s grown in the tunnel house will be taken to our kitchen and cooked for the kids. The waste will then go back into our composting system to be made into fertiliser for our garden. This gives the kids an opportunity to experience every aspect of the growing and gardening system.”
The garden is watered with rainwater collected in a tank.
“We are all about sustainability. We’re teaching the kids about how water is valuable and how there are many ways to use and collect it sustainably. We are teaching the kids how to grow their food and reduce waste while doing it.”
She says the staff and children are thankful to the Stratford District Council’s waste levy fund and waste and water education officer Peter McNamara.
“Without the fund and Peter’s support, we wouldn’t have been able to do this. ”