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Madhvi the Advocate

Madhvi the Advocate
Posted on 08/16/2018
Hackberry Hill Elementary third-grader Madhvi Chittoor is working to convince her school district to cut down on plastic and Styrofoam use.Golden has long been a favorite destination for anyone who has to get outside. The city’s Lions Park is a perfect spot for nature lovers like Madhvi Chittoor. Madhvi, a third-grader at Hackberry Hill Elementary, could spend all day watching the water rush by in Clear Creek. Madhvi and her mom, Lalitha, enjoy the beauty that surrounds them. Lalitha encouraged her daughter’s love of the Earth from an early age.

“She has been interested in wildlife, even when she was like four and a half, five. She was reading a lot generally about animals, and plants and wildlife,” explained Lalitha.

“And also, at school, I did a project, about plants and animals,” added Madhvi.

A string of family visits to National Parks helped too, but it was when she watched a documentary about how Albatross often mistake plastic debris in the ocean for food, killing them, that Madhvi became an advocate, writing an e-book about how microplastics gets into the food chain.

“When they throw it in the trash, it goes to the landfill,” explained Madhvi. “The landfill makes microplastics and nitrates and harms our wildlife by going into our groundwater and streams.”

She took her cause to politicians – Congressman Ed Perlmutter and Governor John Hickenlooper. After meeting with Madhvi, Hickenlooper set aside a month for plastic and Styrofoam pollution awareness. She didn’t stop there. Madhvi launched a letter-writing campaign, urging restaurants, and even her school district, to be more eco-friendly. When she grows up, Madhvi hopes to continue her advocacy as an environmental engineer.

“We can help the world. Make a better place by not using plastic and Styrofoam,” said Madhvi.

“It would be a very big step,” added Lalitha.

See the JPS-TV version of this story below or here.

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