Awards such as The Young Environmentalist, One Good Idea and the Gaisce Award, provide huge personal development for students, providing them with opportunities to upskill in areas that they are not available in the standard curriculum.

The Young Environmentalist places an emphasis on personal development and student empowerment. The awards honour the work of young people to protect, conserve and enhance the environment through local environmental projects, making a difference to their lives and the lives of others both locally and globally.

ECO Leader Award 2017

Susan Adams

I won ECO UNESCO’s ECO Leader of the Year 2017 for supporting Newpark School and Kill of the Grange National School in winning environmental awards in the Young Environmentalist Awards 2017. Newpark School won the Young Environmentalist Awards again under my leadership in 2018 for becoming Ireland’s first single-use plastic free school. These winning action projects are a direct result of the modules that I run with primary and secondary schools.

Young Environmentalist Award Winner 2018 - Plastic Outta the Park

Newpark School - Ireland's First Single Use Plastic School

Newpark won the overall prize out of 340 schools nationwide for their inspirational project by becoming Ireland’s first single use plastic free school in 2018.

The students eradicated plastic from their school by the introduction of writing a new school policy, the school diary has educational plastic facts and a pledge for each student to sign. Parents and students were both surveyed and petitioned as a declaration of support.

Newpark School Young Environmentalist Award Winners 2017 ‘Algae-tecture’

A group of 5 Transition Year students created an algae-based oxygenator to combat indoor pollution in their school. The students grew algae based eco system in a bottle that scrubbed CO2 from the atmosphere and simultaneously produced oxygen to improve the air quality. The device proved to enhance student concentration as the quality of air in the room was increased. The group won first prize in the ECO Enterprise category for their innovative product.

Kill O’The Grange National School Young Environmentalist Awards 2017 - The Eco Pirates

Kill O’The Grange National School, won the Super Junior category in Eco Unesco’s Young Environmentalist Awards in 2017, under my supervision. The group campaigned to introduce a bottle bill scheme into Ireland. Their project reached over 2000 people. This was achieved by collecting 500 signatures for their petition, which they presented to Cathairleach Cormac Devlin, they created their own website, media cover in the local newspaper, a play, a garden project, they piloted a bottle return scheme in their school, collecting 1659 bottles over 3 lunch times, they showcased their project in the local library, they received sponsorship from Supervalu and much more.

TEDX Ballybofey, Co Donegal 2018 - ‘The Power of Taking Action’

This TEDX talk is about a world that is poised on the brink of an environmental crisis, taking action has never been more important. However, there is a void between the information that we are learning and the caring that is necessary to motivate action. Susan Adams has used action projects as a gateway to bridge this void. Using young people as a launchpad towards the next higher level of ambition and to reframe the environmental crisis.