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Everyday sustainability heroes

The challenges ahead…

Xenith were delighted to check-in with James Allen’s Girls’ School’s Sustainability Lead, Priya Hira.

Since joining the school at the turn of the year, Priya has masterminded its sustainability drive and consistently championed greener initiatives as JAGS embarks on its mission to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030.  

We chose to feature Priya as she demonstrates the inspiring qualities of an “everyday sustainability hero”.  

Schools face unique challenges, distinct from those of a commercial business, yet such obstacles can’t stop them from taking the first steps on their journey to becoming more sustainable. 

With rising energy costs and 10% inflation predicted, it could be an overwhelming challenge, yet Priya is unfazed and pragmatic, she knows there are opportunities ahead, with returns both big and small.  She isn’t afraid to do the work, even if that means cranking the winch on their new on-site composter. 😊

Priya recognises it is unrealistic to eliminate printing and copying in schools. However, by setting the right expectations, building momentum, and initiating quick wins she is fast reducing unnecessary waste. 

A solution unfolds…

JAGS started the journey by assessing paper-heavy outputs through their Managed Print Service (MPS) contracts. Unlike corporations where an employee’s role identifies specific manual/paper-heavy tasks, school administrators, management, and faculty, don’t have established tasks or workflows for defining print/copy outputs, it is largely based on an individual’s choice. 

As their MPS provider, Xenith collaborates with JAGS sustainability goals and Priya’s KPIs, and is the reason why we suggested Print Releaf.  

Print Releaf is an offset print program, whenever the school hits print/copy, the amount of paper is tracked so that new trees can be planted to replace areas of the World needing reforestation.  As a preferred Education partner, Xenith paid for JAGS membership to Print Releaf, so they can replace what they print.

“This opportunity was a quick win for me,” Priya explains.  “Through Print Releaf I can access measurement dashboards where data can be run and analysed.  Print Releaf offered an opportunity to raise awareness communicating our key performance metrics, with key stakeholders across the school.”  

More about PrintReleaf

Answers to sustainability are not easy, or straight-forward.  It takes partnership, collaboration, and respect to build lasting solutions.  

Future initiatives… 

When building the future, we need to identify where we’ve come from.  Priya was inspired by her Mum, “from an early age I was raised with the importance of reducing waste.”  

The 3-Rs: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle are in her blood, as Priya shared, “the opportunities abound to make a school sustainable, especially following a good foundation.”  And we couldn’t agree more.

On most days, Priya can be found winch-in-hand, actively composting in the school garden, where she reuses and recycles potato peelings, left over from school lunches.  Not only regenerating the soil but fuelling both the seed’s potential and the student’s gardening efforts. <3 

Xenith will continue helping Priya’s goals in 2023, heading to the school to raise awareness on print behaviours to the school’s administration, and faculty.  Leaving Priya to roll out student print credits to engage the rest of a complex eco-system of stakeholders.  

What a great way to inspire the next generation of scientists, botanists, and young people, to be interested in a greener, more sustainable life for themselves, their community, and the World.  Well done, Priya Hira, and thank you for inviting us on your sustainable journey.

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