Feb. 15, 2012: Thanks to a $5,000 grant from The Bronxville School Foundation, the Bronxville High School is the proud owner of a BigBelly Solar Trash and Recycling Compactor.
Bronxville High School's Environmental Club had set its sights for some time on the BigBelly system, built by the Direct Environmental Corporation. The club subsequently decided to submit a grant request to The Bronxville School Foundation, which, in turn, awarded the club over $5,000 to make its dream a reality.
"Every day, we saw trash bins overflowing with take-out containers, papers, Gatorade and water bottles," reported Hannah Goldberg, who wrote the grant. "This was detrimental to the environment and to our school's reputation. We wanted to take action and turned to The Bronxville School Foundation for help."
The BigBelly is a highly efficient, almost elegant, dual-bin kiosk, one for trash and the other for bottles and cans. The compactor harnesses the sun's energy and stores it in a 12-volt battery that powers the compaction of both bins. The compacting system reduces the trash volume of a standard bin by four or five times and lowers the costs associated with trash collection by as much as 80%. Because it is a closed system, the BigBelly will reduce the amount of litter that often surrounds the school's trash cans.
The club has located the compactor near the school track, where it will receive ample sunlight and be in a high-traffic area. "Sports teams practice and have games there 24-7; parents and community members walk the track daily," said club president Julian Bardin. "We hope that when other teams come to play at our field, they will be inspired by our BigBelly and follow our lead."
Faculty advisor Amy Bastone added, "The club members have taken the first step to make the school and Village of Bronxville greener. Now it's up to other students and community members to do their part."
"We are so grateful to the foundation for seeing the importance of our efforts to enlighten the community about waste management and the benefits of solar power," said Goldberg. Foundation board member Molly Hendrick acknowledged, "This is the kind of grant we love to see: student-initiated and innovative with long-term benefits for not only the school but also the community."
For more information, please contact the foundation's executive director, Peggy Williams, at the foundation office at 914-395-0515 or the grants committee vice president, Molly Hendrick, at
, or visit www.bronxvilleschoolfoundation.org.
Pictured here: Environmental Club member Hannah Goldberg and president Julian Bardin with the BigBelly compacting system.
Photo courtesy of The Bronxville School Foundation