Hillsborough County Public Utilities and the City of Tampa Water Department invited students in the School District of Hillsborough County to participate in the Drop Savers poster contest.
Kelsey Smith, senior environmental scientist for Hillsborough County’s Water Conservation program, said, “This is one of Florida Section of the American Water Works Association’s most important outreach programs. The poster contest allows participants to have fun and at the same time promote the importance of water conservation in their homes.”
Students in grades K-12 were encouraged to create a poster depicting a water conservation idea—in slogan form, drawing form or both—focusing on the importance of water conservation. Students had to work individually and could use crayons, paint, color pencils or markers. They were required to create an original piece of art for a panel of judges to review. Winning posters were judged based on the message, creativity and originality.
Judges chose a first, second and third-place local winner for each division. First-place winners advanced to the statewide level, led and judged by the Florida Section of the American Water Works Association.
Locally, this year’s first-place winners included Cooper Bess from Stowers Elementary School and Miki Lin from Brandon High School.
The winning students’ schools were awarded bottle-filling stations and reusable water bottles for the first-place winning students’ art classes. Bottle-filling stations save money because students do not need to buy single-use bottles of water, and they help the environment by eliminating plastic bottles from the water stream.
Smith said, “For Hillsborough County, conserving water has many benefits for the customer, the utility and the environment, including saving money on water and sewer bills, reducing the costs of building new water and wastewater infrastructure and preserving the environment and resources to ensure that clean water will be available for current and future generations. The poster contest is a long-range education and awareness program with the hope for creating lifelong conservers and ambassadors for conservation. It challenges students to explore water conservation concepts and to creatively express their individual ideas of the importance of water conservation.”
Smith added, “Water conservation starts with you. We work closely with Tampa Bay Water Wise (TBWW), the regional water conservation program offered by Tampa Bay Water that offers rebates for homeowners and business owners who purchase and install water-saving devices.”
Visit https://tampabaywaterwise.org/en/ for more information.