By Mick Jensen
Danielle Faichnie has had a bottler idea.
She wants to leave a practical, healthy legacy when she leaves Ashburton Borough School at the end of next term.
The 13-year-old has enjoyed her eight years at Borough and wants to bow out by gifting 450 BPA-free drink bottles to all pupils and another 50 to next year’s new entrants.
She and her family have raised $1000 for the project through selling Fairlie pies and meat packs.
A similar amount has been given by local business DPI, which will emboss the bottles.
Danielle has set up a Givealittle page to raise the shortfall of $1500 and is asking the community to support her efforts.
Any donations of vouchers and other items will also be used as raffle prizes.
The drink bottle legacy has been inspired and developed from a Year 8 project Danielle completed under the Primary Years Programme, a programme run at Borough School through its accreditation as an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School.
She named her project STOP – Rethink Your Drink.
Danielle said the project tasked students with building knowledge around a specific school issue and set them the challenge of coming up with a positive action.
“I chose school water bottles and developed three main lines of inquiry.
“I looked at how single use bottles are bad for the environment, at how sugary drinks affect our health and ability to learn and also the fact that some families cannot afford to provide their children with a decent drink bottle.”
She said there was peer pressure at school to have “the right branded” water bottle.
Some children had no water bottle at all, while some had cheap, poor quality bottles, aimed primarily at single use.
“My action was to create a drink bottle that suited everyone and that was BPA-free as well.”
Danielle has taken her recommendation further and now wants to put the theory into practice by providing water bottles for everyone at her school.
The bottles are aimed at encouraging children to drink more water and to switch the focus from sugary drinks in schools.
Danielle has come up with her own logo and wording for the bottle and will replace the ABS of Ashburton Borough School with the inspirational words Apply Believe Succeed.
“We don’t all achieve at the same level, but it is important that if we apply ourselves, we can succeed in our own way.”
Danielle Faichnie is a keen science buff and has claimed two science awards this year.
She is eyeing up a possible career as a pharmacy technician.