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Deputy Mayor praises ACT students on ‘amazing’ sculptures to raise awareness of plastic pollution

08 December 2017

Deputy Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor John Boyle has praised the Eden Place Arts Centre and the ACT group who have teamed up with Donegal based artist Andrew Garvey Williams to design sculptures made from plastic waste collected from local beaches to raise awareness of the devastating impact of plastic pollution.

ACT is a person centred and led-educational, training, personal & social development project for young people with learning disabilities aged 16-23 years transitioning from school to adult life. 

Every year the ACT students work in partnership with Eden Place Arts Centre and local artists on a creative and educational project which helps to raise awareness of European Week for Waste Reduction (which runs from 18–26 November).

Deputy Mayor Cllr John Boyle, who hosted today’s official launch of the ACT students’ plastic sculptures which are now on public display on the riverside walkway outside the Council offices and at the Playtrail, said: “I am delighted to officially launch these fantastic sculptures – which really are an amazing use of waste plastic!

“It is great to see so many young people involved in a recycling project like this – which aims to raise awareness of the huge damage that plastic pollution is causing to our rivers, seas and oceans.

“This excellent project not only educates and engages young people about the problem of plastic pollution but also helps to build their connection to nature.

“Indeed, the problem of plastic pollution in our rivers and oceans is growing at an alarming rate – which is why we all have to ‘rethink plastic’ and the way that we deal with plastic waste.”

This year, the ACT students were aware of the devastating impact of plastic pollution – and wanted to use European Week for Waste Reduction to highlight this important issue and the resultant suffering caused to sea-life.  Indeed, over 100,000 marine mammals and 1 million seabirds die every year as a result of plastic pollution.

Eden Place Arts Centre Co-ordinator, Judi Logue added: “We are really excited to be launching the amazing artwork created by the ACT group.

“They really are such a creative group of young people who are deeply concerned about the environment and have worked so hard on this project.

“I hope that their fantastic artwork gets the appreciation that it so rightly deserves – as it will now be on public display for all to see!”