It all started in March of 2018, when Rachael met Grade5 teacher, Sinead from Acacia International School ( in Livingstone.  Sinead also passionate about the environment asked if Pure Skills would present to her class.  A talk that would encompass the environment, waste and re purposed/ recycled products that are made by Pure Skills.

Accompanied by Cecelia they spent 2 hours talking with the class about pollution and our environment.  They also did a “show and tell” in cutting glass and how to make an Eco brick.  The session was very well received by an already passionate class.

The research done for the presentation gave light to the statistics for single use plastic straws.  And served to prompt a quest to find viable alternatives here in Livingstone.

The USA alone uses 500 million straws every day (enough straws to circle around the Earth 2.5 times!)

It was following a business trip when Manny was provided with a Bamboo straw for his drink at a local lodge that the team began to research how to make bamboo straws.  The straws that Royal Chundu provides guests were made by villagers in the area around the lodge.

Research completed and the optimum way to produce and cure the straws adopted the team embarked on the first products, which were displayed at Acacia School science fair in July.

It takes up to 200 years for a plastic straw to degrade.

The Acacia pupils continued with learning more and taking action on environmental issues over the next term. They had also been learning differing persuasive techniques and how to include these in a variety of ways in their writing. 

In September they decided to participate in the one less straw campaign ( and lobby local restaurants and hotels into pledging to only provide plastic straws upon request.

Armed with 70 Pure Skills bamboo straws they set about achieving their goal. Delivering a passionate and persuasive speech to 8 businesses and securing pledges from 7 of those.  In the process they also secured retail outlets for Pure Skills bamboo straws on a sale or return basis.

Plastics do not biodegrade, and never fully degrade.  To make matters worse, the degrading of plastic releases chemicals that are toxic to wildlife and the environment.

‘Can’t you see? Do something!’ was Acacia Schools Grade 5’s motto and they think it should be yours too!  Well done Grade 5  #Saynotoplasticstraws