In recognition of Waste Reduction Week in Canada, Mason Parkhill, a 4-year-old Maple Ridge resident, will be named Ridge Meadows Recycling Society’s 2011 Recycler of the Year at the Maple Ridge Council Chambers at the regular council meeting on Tuesday, October 11.
Mason’s interest in recycling began with a friendly garbage collector and his garbage truck. This led to his interest in Maple Ridge’s recycling trucks with their unique, multiple compartments and how things get recycled. “From there (Mason) just started asking more and more questions and was really interested in all of it!” says his mother, Amanda. For his fourth birthday, Mason and his friends went on a tour of the Ridge Meadows Recycling Depot, located just off River Road in the Albion Industrial Park. Free tours of the depot are given to local schools and community groups, as well as an annual visit from BCIT Environmental Health students.
With his natural curiosity and the awareness that came from helping sort his family’s recycling each week, plus encouragement from his family and educational books, toys, & games, Mason began applying his knowledge to the world around him and noticed some things weren’t quite right. So he wrote a letter to the Maple Ridge mayor & council: “Hi! My name is Mason Parkhill and I’m four years old. I’m really interested in recycling and garbage. I’ve noticed that most garbage bins at bus stops are full of recyclable materials, mostly pop and water bottles. I would like to see recycle bins attached to all bus stops next to the garbage cans. It would also be a good idea to have recycle bins in schoolyards and parks. I look forward to hearing what you think of my idea. Yours truly, Mason Parkhill (with help from my mom).”
Mason’s awareness of how our actions affect the world around us, his concern about the environment he’ll be growing up in, and he and his family’s commitment to taking action to make the world a better place led Ridge Meadows Recycling Society naming him their 2011 “Recycler of the Year.” Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin agrees. Says Daykin, “It’s really cool that somebody that’s four years old is already environmentally responsible and thinking about what would make his community better.”
Congratulations Mason, and the whole Parkhill family!