COOK ISLANDS YOUNGSTERS RECYCLE GLASS FOR ART

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By Tara Carr

AVARUA, Rarotonga, Cook Islands (March 8, 2000 - Cook Islands News)---What were once discarded glass bottles along Rarotonga's beaches are now unique one-of-a-kind pieces of recycled artwork.

The popular artwork pieces are made form recycled glass bottles collected by the young boys and girls of the Cook Islands Environmental Rangers.

They are now selling at the Bergman & Sons Banana Court Complex in Avarua.

PROCEEDS

All proceeds from the sale of the glass gifts, which are priced between NZ$ 5 (US 2.44 and NZ$ 25 (US$ 12.21), go to support the Environmental Rangers in their efforts to preserve and protect the Cook Islands environment by keeping the beaches beautiful and litter free.

Rarotonga Environmental Awareness Programme's (REAP) Bruce Gray said the collected bottles are melted into the beautiful pieces of art using a toaster oven kiln.

They are decorated with environmental themes of marine scenes to flowers and plants.

Because of the unique melting properties of glass, no two bottles ever come out quite the same, Gray said.

DESIGN IDEAS

The design ideas for the bottles come from the young Rangers themselves based upon their individual environmental experiences and concerns.

Ben Bergman of Bergman & Sons said he and his family are happy to support the rangers in their effort.

It's important for young people to realize that protecting the environment is important and that doing so brings its own rewards, he said.

Bergman added that all Cook Islanders should take pride in the example shown by the young boys and girls of the Environmental Rangers.

So, if you're on the look out for that special gift, then these pieces are the perfect answer -- and you'll be doing your share for the environment in recycling and at the same time help support the work being done by these young Environmental Rangers.

For additional reports from the Cook Islands News Online, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/Cook Islands News Online.

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