The Green Dream Team, one of our past winners of our Project Polar Bear Contest, had fun and helped polar bears at the same time.

© Green Dream Team/Polar Bears International

2/27/2014 10:49:50 PM

2014 Project Polar Bear Winners Announced

They did it again—the Project Polar Bear Teams bowled us over with their hard work and creative projects to reduce CO2 in their communities, and engage and sustain community action.

Our Project Polar Bear Contest is a three-month-long competition that challenges teams of young people to design and carry out long-lasting community projects that reduce CO2.

"I'm always amazed and inspired by the passion and can-do spirit of the students that compete in the contest," said Leah Knickerbocker, assistant director of education at PBI. "They're creating pathways to a sustainable world and having fun at the same time."

The contest judges chose winners from the following categories, awarding cash grants that will help the top-scoring teams carry on their projects:

Cubs - Middle school students in teams of 1-5

Great White Bears - Middle and/or high school students in teams of 6-34

The top-scoring teams were:

The Green Dream Team - Cubs Category - $500 Grant

This team impressed our judges with the number and thoughtfulness of their projects. During their "1,000 Acts of Green" project the team asked their schoolmates to log the ways they were doing things to help the environment. Within three weeks, they had 1,000 Acts of Green. They also planned and hosted a green holiday dinner. Guests brought their own drinking glasses, used reusable dishes and silverware, and ate a meatless organic meal. After dinner, the team gave a presentation about polar bears and how guests can reduce their carbon footprint. The team also collected quarters for polar bears, hosted a Power Down Day at their school, and gave presentations to third grade classes about the Arctic, including a discussion about what third graders can do to help polar bears and the environment. The team includes five 11- and 12-year-olds from South Allegheny Elementary and their mentor, Jenna Whitney.

The Ice Ice Savers - Great White Bears Category - $750 Grant

This team focused on car-free transportation. They raised funds and awareness by selling T-shirts and bracelets made from old magazines. The entire seventh grade worked to reduce the number of vehicles transporting kids to student events. At the start of the project, 86% of students were riding with their own parents to any given practice or activity. By the end of the project, 43% of students were riding with their own parents and the majority, 57% were carpooling! The team includes fifteen 12- and 13-year-olds from South Allegheny Middle School and their mentor, Brianne Mayer.

Special Thanks

We also want to recognize the overall contributions of all the teams who contributed to CO2 reduction and sustainability efforts in their community. Way to go, all of you! 

Watch the video announcement of the 2014 winners below!

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