The national campaign was joined by nearly 8,000 children who collected 40 tons of paper and saved 520 trees.
The start of the school year was marked by the fourth consecutive edition of the national campaign “Old Paper for New Book”, which toured the towns of Haskovo, Sofia, Varna, and Russe. Under the motto “Clean Up and Read Up”, the children once again had the opportunity to learn more about recycling, how they can help save and protect nature and how to collect waste separately, and could get a free book of their own choosing. Each child who, together with an accompanying adult, handed over for recycling at least 5kg of old paper was entitled to a free book of choice, as well as gifts from the event partners.
The 2016 campaign achieved excellent results – nearly 8,000 children joined in, collecting 40 tons of paper and saving 520 trees, and more than 10,000 new books were given away.
In Haskovo, the event took place on 10th of September, within the week of city day celebrations. Close to 1,000 children from the town collected 4.7 tons of paper for recycling, saved 61 trees, and received more than 1,000 books as gifts from the campaign.
In Sofia, “Old Paper for New Book” was held for the fourth consecutive time under the patronage of Mayor Yordanka Fandukova and was part of the Cultural Events Calendar of Sofia Municipality. The event in the capital took place on September 11th, in front of Greenwich Book Center and brought in 16.2 tons of old paper collected by 3,150 children who, assisted by their parents, saved 210 trees and in return got more than 3,500 books to take home.
For the first time this year, the campaign visited the city of Varna. The event was held on September 17that the entrance to the Sea Garden, and was held within the Funcity+ Festival, which is part of Varna’s scheduled program as European Youth Capital 2017. More than 2,500 books found their way into the hands of knowledge-thirsty young readers in the campaign’s first edition in Bulgaria’s seaside capital. More than 1,300 children collected 7 tons of paper and saved 91 trees.
The last event of the “Old Paper for New Book” campaign was held in Russe on September 18th and marked the initiative’s second visit to this Danube River city. The campaign doubled its success from the previous year, placing the residents of Russe among the most active and eager-to-learn participants overall. In Russe, 2,500 children handed over 12 tons of paper for recycling and in return got more than 3,000 new books. With the collected paper for recycling, the participants saved 156 trees from felling.
All activities were organized by ECOPACK Bulgaria and Greenwich Book Center, and were carried out with the assistance of the respective municipalities and regional libraries.
The campaign organizers took careto stage each event as a celebration for the children, making sure they not only learned about books and about protecting the environment, but also had a great time and lots of fun. All four events featured the performance of the eco-themed play “Tale of Little Heroes with Empty Bellies” about the cute little animal characters Paper-Eater, Plastic-Eater, and Glass-Eater, who live in the park and feed on packaging trash. After the show, every child got a comic coloring book with the story of the characters in the play performed by The Fairy Tale Theater-Sofia. There were also fun literature and environmental quiz games with many gifts and surprises for the children and their parents, with lots of music, dancing, games, and interesting challenges. In all four cities, local children’s and teen singing groups and dance troupes kept up the good mood and made sure everyone enjoyed themselves.
This year the face of the campaign was the Big Friendly Giant from the long-awaited Spielberg movie based on Roald Dahl’s novel The BFG. The participating children who answered correctly the quiz game questions about Roald Dahl and his book, The BFG, were rewarded with lots of prizes from the campaign partners. In Sofia, the kids who gave the right answers were rewarded with gala premiere invitations for the movie The BFG, which took place on September 13th in honor of the 100 year anniversary of the British author’s birth.
The funds raised from the collected paper in the four cities are togo towards the publishing costs ofthe special “You Can Save the Planet” edition, provided in advance by ECOPACK Bulgaria. The paper collected by the young environmentalists from Varna secured 100 books for the library of the city’s The Social Teahouse.
The very first “Old Paper for New Book” campaign was launched on September 15th in 2013. More than 9,300 children took part in the three editions of 2013, 2014, and 2015. The kids, together with their parents, handed over for recycling more than 50 tons of paper and were presented with more than 10,000 books. Thus we have all helped save 657 trees from felling.
In 2015 the initiative was taken to a national scale with the inclusion of Russe and Plovdiv in the campaign, and in 2016, the residents of Sofia, Haskovo, Varna, and Russe had the opportunity to motivate their children to save natural resources and act responsibly to the environment, and to cultivate their love of books and reading.
Let us save nature together and encourage our children to read!
The “Old Paper for New Book” campaign was held with the support of the publishing houses Hermes, Bard, Knigomania, Fyut, Egmont, Trud, Damyan Yakov, Siela, Softpress, PAN, Zlatnoto Pate, Albo Group. The official partners to the campaign were Enthusiast Publishing House, The Fun Reading, and BS Films – the distributors of the movie The BFG.NOVA TV, ploshtadslaveikov.com, clubz.bg, dnes.bg, az-deteto.bg, azcheta.com were media partners.