Fifth graders sift through trash as part of Berrien County "waste audit"

A Michigan middle school has upped its recycling efforts in an attempt to limit its contributions to landfill waste.

Fifth graders at Coloma Middle School spent this afternoon digging through trash, an activity that turned out to be not so pretty.

“We're going to be a stronger school together. If we can recycle, and everybody can get on board and we can be consistent with recycling throughout, we can help the environment, and that's really what it comes down to," said Natalie Macerata, a fifth grade teacher at Coloma Middle School.

Thanks to a $6,000 grant from Berrien County, schools throughout the district in Coloma will work on recycling. Those in charge of the program hope that it continues to expand into a county-wide sustainable recycling effort.

Emily Gallay, Executive Director of Gateway Services says, “It's not just at the school level, but also the community level. So we see the importance of it starting early, as we see in everything. Education, education, education. That's why we're really excited about the waste levels that are occurring.”

Fifth graders at today’s recycling event said they saw mostly apples and milk as they sifted through trash.

The Berrien County grant gave the schools recycling equipment and the opportunity to conduct waste audits like the one held today at Coloma.

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