A Level students on Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor's Dolgellau campus recently organised and carried out a litterpicking event on the Marian in the centre of Dolgellau as part of their Welsh Baccalaureate 'Community Challenge' work.  This is something which the students have been doing for some years to express their commitment to the local community and their immediate environment. 

The area cleared by the students included part of the Mawddach Trail which cuts through the centre of town, running along the riverside at the Marian.  As a main pathway for local people and tourists, clearing the Mawddach trail and environs of litter demonstrates a strong sense of commitment by the students to their local community and environment, leading to self-development as well as gaining organisational and project-management skills - and this is what the Welsh Baccalaureate qualification is all about.  

The students project-managed the event, under the guidance of Welsh Baccalaureate lecturer Barbara Morgan, and with the assistance of Student Union President Rob Whittey and local councillor Linda Morgan.  Planning included aspects such as health and safety assessments, insurance, sourcing hi-vis vests, thinking about warm clothing, planning the route and ensuring timing was appropriate, organising what happened to the litter collected, providing refreshments and somewhere to shelter. 

Cllr Linda Morgan helped out by liaising with the Town Council to ensure that the Cricket Pavilion was open for tea and biscuits, comfort breaks and shelter.

The students set about collecting a large assortment of litter, including an old tyre someone had dumped - and all during their half term break.  

Cllr Morgan said:

We have developed a fantastic and worthwhile partnership with the College which is great for the local community, and many students have taken part in litterpicks during the last few years. An incredible 15 bags of rubbish, a tyre and boxes were collected before the students sorted the re-cycling of cans, bottles and plastic.

Special thanks go to all the students who took part. It was a real pleasure to be with them during the litterpick - they were so polite and a credit to the College.

Welsh Baccalaureate Lecturer Barbara Morgan said:

The students did a sterling job of organising this event and had a great attitude on the day despite very cold weather.  Special thanks are extended to Jonathan Neale of Gwynedd Council Tidy Towns Officer for his support and the litterpicking equipment provided.  We would also like to thank Cllr Linda Morgan and SU President Rob Whittey for their help in making this event successful. And of course the students themselves - the number of binbags they filled speaks for itself.

Some of the students who took part had the following to say:

I felt that collectively we were successful during the litterpicking, and cleared a large amount of rubbish from the Marian and the stretch of the Mawddach trail running alongside, and thanks to Barbara Morgan, our tutor for the Welsh Baccalaureate, and county councillor Linda Morgan, the day was made more enjoyable. 

Norton Stone, Student

It was a fun and successful day that allowed the group to assist the community in keeping the Marian clean, so it can be used without litter causing injury or distracting from the activities that take place upon it.

Jamie Barker, Student

I enjoyed being a part of the litterpicking group.  It was a great opportunity to work with other students and to help the community at the same time.

Rabia Ali, Student

Good session of litterpicking.  Great seeing students enjoying themselves whilst helping the community.

Rob Whittey, Student Union President. 

Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor offers a range of courses and qualifications. If you need more information on any of our courses, please visit the courses section of the website at www.gllm.ac.uk/courses or contact the course advice line on 01341 422 827.