Honey venture signals sweet success for high school students
Student change makers at Yarrabilba State Secondary College are leading the charge in creating a sweet and sustainable movement to create a bee-friendly community in Yarrabilba.
What started as a program to learn about the power of pollinators, have evolved to an online store to bring sweet success for our young student entrepreneurs.
The IXL Academy, Ecology and Sustainable Program was launched in 2020, encouraging students to place importance on the environment around them. This year, students in Years 7 and 8 decided to learn about the role bees play in our natural environment.
Yarrabilba State Secondary College Head of Department Chris Gauthier said by being awarded a Yarrabilba Community Grant, the school was able to establish a native bee hive, take part in workshops run by Bee One Third and launch their first online store.
“The students were encouraged to brainstorm together and come up with a subject they would like to learn about. They choose pollinators. Through Albert Valley Wilderness Society, we made our own native bee hotels and had students learn about the importance of pollinators through Bee One Third,” he said.
“There are currently 48 beehives situated on undeveloped land in Yarrabilba which we are using the honey from to sell on our new student website.
“We have also been using the bees wax to make lip balm, bees wax wraps and candles. These will also be sold through our website.”
Yarrabilba students have learnt the importance of pollination in the life cycle of plants and our future food supply, with a third of the world’s food production reliant on bees.
Mr Gauthier said the honey program has helped students create a real business model, teaching them the skills to run it.
“Through our program, the students have been able to learn about creating a business, transferable skills that will serve them later in life, no matter what career path they take,” he said.
“Along with learning about pollinators, we are also creating responsible citizens and highlighting the power they have to make real change in our environment.
"The school is very thankful for our Yarrabilba Community Grant, which has provided us with the funds to build our website and establish a honey hive on campus. Our future plans are to set up a flow hive, so students can learn about the different types of bees.”
Want to purchase your own Yarrabilba honey? Visit yarrabilbahoney.com. The website will go live in the coming weeks.