Many of us wouldn't know Mat. He's been helping our entire community out for over six years now. Mat works with an organization called Treat Every Environment Special (TrEES) which, we are proud to say, has been our recycling partner at Ampang for that amount of time and more. We are extremely proud of our recycling efforts at ISKL and happily boast that, over the past five years, we have kept over 16,000 kg of waste from the landfill.
Over the past year things have become increasingly more difficult for Mat. Instead of arriving and filling up his truck with bags which are sorted and separately packaged (from bins around campus), he has found himself, increasingly, having to open bags to discard non-recyclable waste, empty half-filled bottles and to sort things appropriately. What should take half hour sometimes extends to four hours or so, and, with sweat heavily dripping from his brow, he sorts, weighs and fills his truck and drives on.
As consumers we often don't think about the story involved behind discarding something. But we're hoping that knowing that there is a person - Mat, a hard working and unassuming one - on the other side of this will allow our community to recognize the human element of the recycling program. After all, recycling is not detached from human experience. It is heavily involved and integral part of who we are and what we do at ISKL.
As a point of reference, when you're doing your part in participating in our on-going recycling efforts (as we hope you will) please take a moment to support Mat, and the environment, by emptying and appropriately sorting recyclables in the bins provided. If you happen to bring things from home, please separate your recyclables by type as you would at school.
What could take just a moment for us to decide which bin to use, could mean the difference between a half hour pre-sorted pick up and a four hour sifting through trash and smells in the name of environmental sustainability. Thank you for doing your part - our part - in making the world a beautiful place!