Participants: Chris Partridge(Keep Wales Tidy), Rhiannon Simms, Anthony Simms, Rhys Palmer, Debbie Gray, Karen Dummett (observer) , Mrs. Thomas (Head Teacher) and most importantly Glan Morfa Eco Club.
The activity began with a Health and Safety discussion by Chris (Tidy Towns Officer) explaining to the children why they only pick litter up with litter pickups and the reasons behind clearing the graffiti. He then talked to the children about the graffiti clean up kits, how they work, why we should wear gloves, old clothes, tabards and why the solutions don’t work so well when we add water to it. It was then explained that we need to wash the equipment using water from our watering cans and that the chemicals were all biodegradable.
We then left the School and headed towards the Library Garden.
Graffiti makes people think that the community is unconcerned about its appearance and this can affect Ysgol Glan Morfa as the children use this Park on a daily basis during school time and in their spare time. It was therefore included by the children as part of their School ground audit, which will be a step towards becoming an Eco School, a campaign run by Keep Wales Tidy. Data shows if we can remove the graffiti within 24-48hrs it discourages it reoccurring and therefore gives the children a sense of ownership and pride.
All the children had been told to wear old clothes, were given a tabard and wore protective gloves throughout the event, the gloves were often replaced 3 or 4 times at the request of individual children!! The 14 Eco warriors were then split into groups of 3-4 with one adult to help and supervise during the activity.
Chris then gave out the anti graffiti wet wipes and we were all told to rub the paint off. We soon found we had to rub quite hard, which made us need a couple of pairs of gloves. He then gave four children protective eye goggles to wear in order to ensure that no chemical would have an adverse effect on the children's eyes before using a spray bottle of graffiti removal solution which helped to remove all traces of the graffiti. Water was then poured over the surface and the equipment was wiped dry.
The children had a great time and 3-letters of thanks have been sent already to the school by local residents as a result of this work.