Students from local universities who partnered to promote sustainable environmental management through innovation, community empowerment and entrepreneurial action on Friday last week walked away with various cash prizes ranging from $600 to $3500 courtesy of Delta Beverages and Boost Fellowship.
Chinhoyi University of Technology who were the overall winners walked away $3450 richer while Africa University and Women University in Africa (Polycycle Team) received $1050.
Bindura University of Science Education (Environmental Titans) received $1250.
Midlands States University and Great Zimbabwe (Thriving Green) won $600 while Catholic University in Zimbabwe and Harare Institute of Technology (Recovery) $650.
Speaking at the Delta Boost Make A Difference Campaign, Acting Director of Environmental Management Services, Alleta Nyahuye said the programme augments their drive to foster environmental stewardship amongst youths.
“Indeed, this programme augments our drive to foster environmental stewardship amongst our youths under the ‘Catch Them Young’ programme targeting primary, secondary, tertiary and university students through competitions such as debates, quiz, and conservation projects among others.
“As EMA, we are grateful to partner you in our endeavor to create an eco-conscious society with the youth leading the pack as the future leaders of this country.
“The country generates approximately 1, 7 million tonnes of waste annually of which 32% is biodegradable waste.
“Erratic collection of waste has disturbed the environmental outlook and furthermore resulted in disease outbreaks such as cholera and typhoid.
“As a country, we need to come together and address this environmental menace,” she said.
She urged waste generators to be responsible by embracing the extended producer responsibility.
“In this regard, I urge all waste generators to be responsible for the waste they generate by embracing the extended producer responsibility.
“Extended producer responsibility is a strategy designed to promote the follow up of a product from manufacture up to disposal.
Meanwhile Delta Corporate Affairs Manager, Tsungie Manyeza said this year’s Delta Boost Ethics and Transparency Initiative focused mainly on the cleaner world pillar, prioritizing post consumer packaging waste.
“This year’s Delta Boost Ethics and Transparency Initiative focus mainly on the Cleaner world pillar, prioritizing post consumer packaging waste.
This campaign is part of the ongoing waste management communication campaign we are leading dubbed MAD- Make a Difference,” she said.
Boost Fellowship Executive Director, Busisiwe Marandure said they expect their program to empower young people to not only be environmental sustainability champions but to also make a difference for themselves and their communities through recycling, reusing and reducing waste.