Our eight day trip included a number of physically and mentally challenging activities. Some examples of physically challenging activities were hiking, gorging, and building garden beds in a local school to appreciate and feel the beauty of nature. We also learned about different farming systems and the evils of modern commercial food systems; to forge for vegetation such as clover (yes it is edible!) and others for survival in the wild. We also had the chance to see and learn about the buffalo habitat in Mui Wo!

Throughout the trip every one of us worked together while participating in activities. We conducted a tree survey and built bamboo structures for seed propagation. We were also challenged mentally, particularly when we learned that government policies required greater scrutiny.  A very important example of this came when being briefed that the Environmental Bureau, which claimed that the mega incinerator in Shek Ku Chau will not harm the environment of Hong Kong, but in fact the incinerator will produce at least 300 tonnes of toxic ash around Shek Ku Chau. Moreover, there are vulnerable species such as finless porpoise and pink dolphins living there! This leads to the question of whether the incinerator is really necessary. Further actions can be taken by the government before telling citizens that Hong Kong will be buried under rubbish if we don’t build the incinerator. The government should really try to promote zero waste in HK than to drive a short-sighted and destructive alternative which will only benefit the rich.

We will extend our Challenge Week by completing projects in school such as turning food waste into fertilizer using the bokashi bin, selling herbs (such as Basil) we plant in school, in order to contribute to the school community. Overall, this Challenge Week built our environmental and global awareness. As a group we are now watching the incinerator budget plan closely, and most of us have become active citizens!

It was the best Challenge Week ever as we learnt so much more about the environment.

Melody Fu (11A)