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Something fishy at St. Joseph's in Chemainus

Students from Mr. Muller’s Grade 7 class paint their fish during the Stream of Dreams project on Feb. 22

Students at St. Joseph’s School in Chemainus got up to something fishy.The Stream of Dreams team visited the school on Feb. 22 to teach the students about how are actions affect wildlife.One of the biggest consequences, said former teacher and Stream of Dreams helper, Marilyn Crump, is dumping pollutants down storm drains.Oils and other pollutants get washed straight into ecosystems.Crump said many students are unaware the water that goes into storm drains is untreated, but noted the Chemainus students knew that water goes ‘straight to the creatures.’Students are told about salmon, their lifecycles and importance in ecosystems before they get to paint a fish that will be put up on the chain-link fence by the school.“The have to earn the right to paint a fish,” said Micqualin Waldie one of the Stream of Dreams organizers for Vancouver Island.“They have to know whey they’re doing it,” added Crump.After their information session, students got the chance to paint cut outs of fish, done by volunteers, that will then be affixed to the fence.For Grade 7 Eleanor Brawner, the experience was a good one.“Some of it I knew, but other stuff was new.”The program came about after someone dumped a toxin down a storm drain and killed thousands of fish and even a beaver that lived in Burns Creek in Burnaby in 1998.Concerned crusaders set out to educate kids in the area.But they were far from finished.“The phone never stopped ringing,” said Waldie.Now they have gone into more than 400 schools and educated thousands of students.There is even a 15-school wait list.To learn more about the project

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