Mai Dubai steps up efforts to educate youth on environmental sustainability in partnership with DGrade

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Leading bottled water renews support to Simply Bottles recycling initiative for two consecutive years

In line with its commitment to raise sustainability awareness among the younger generation, Mai Dubai steps up its support to DGrade’s ‘Simply Bottles’ programme through sponsorship of Simply Bottles School Recycling Challenge for the school year 2021-2022.  Mai Dubai has been an active partner of DGrade, a manufacturer of eco-friendly clothing, for the past two years, to help raise awareness on the importance of recycling plastic water bottles through engaging with teachers, students and parents across schools in Dubai.

The goal of the recycling challenge is to increase recycling rates of plastic water bottles by encouraging students to recycle as many plastics water bottles as they can. The initiative also provides a platform for students to create their own recycling drives by collecting plastic not just from the school, but also in their homes, neighborhood and local communities.

Three live assemblies will be held at the Raffles World Academy, Dubai’s flagship school for the initiative, starting on the first week of October. To encourage more participants, the challenge is broken down into phases with the first part taking place in Dubai from the 3rd of October to 9th of December. The first challenge is open to all primary and secondary schools in the emirate that are registered with Simply Bottles. More challenges are set to follow in early 2022.

Alexander van ‘t Riet, Chief Executive Officer of Mai Dubai said: “We have a responsibility to the younger generations, and sustainability is one of those. This is why Mai Dubai is keen in engaging with students and other stakeholders in various sustainability awareness initiatives. We want to help ensure that every piece of plastic we produce is recyclable and can be reused, and this partnership with DGrade is one of the ways we are contributing to the reduction of environmental hazards for a sustainable society. We aim to bring positive changes in the local communities by involving and encouraging our younger generations.”

This initiative is in line with Mai Dubai’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) objectives to help reduce waste through recycling and its mission to be socially and environmentally responsible. As a leading water bottle company, Mai Dubai promotes sustainable practices in its operations and facilities, which has resulted to significant reduction in their carbon footprint in 2020.

On her part, Emma Barber, Managing Director of DGrade commented: “We need to recycle plastic rather than throw it away, and ‘Simply Bottles’ is born out of that in mind. We have to engage and encourage our children to participate in sustainable initiatives that is why ‘Simply Bottles’ works with schools, and this challenge will further provide our children better understanding of how plastic pollution impacts our planet. This is also a chance for them to participate in a circular economy as the bottles collected will be recycled into new products like sustainable clothing by DGrade. We are pleased to have Mai Dubai as one of our partners in this initiative as we believe that it takes more stakeholders to shape and create a sustainable future for our younger generations.”

DGrade is a manufacturer of sustainable clothing and accessories using discarded plastic bottle and ‘Simply Bottles’ is one of their initiatives focused on schools in the UAE with the goal to educate children to recycle plastic water bottles which can be processed into uniforms, PE kits and accessories.

Timothy Roberts, Principal of Raffles World Academy, emphasized the importance of the program, saying, “We are delighted to support this wonderful initiative. Raffles World Academy and all other schools, must be front and centre in the provision of educational opportunities for all stakeholders in order to ensure that future generations inherit a planet that is sustainable and capable of providing health and happiness for all.”

At the end of the competition, participating schools will be awarded with a certificate of achievement indicating the amount of plastic recycled. In addition, schools can win a variety of prizes such as sustainable team t-shirts, caps and face masks made from recycled plastic bottles, as well as Mai Dubai’s bottled water supply for the school.