November 2015
Youth Matters

Pals: Reuse It

Washington Co. elementary schools make great progress in first year of PALS program.

Last year I wrote an article after visiting all five of the elementary schools located in Washington County. I was invited back to visit the schools again this year, so I jumped at the opportunity to see how things had changed. The schools included in my visit were McIntosh, Chatom, Millry, Leroy and Fruitdale.

What a difference a year makes!! Melanie Stokley, a retired school teacher and member of the local Alfa Women’s Committee, created a “Reuse It” competition after my last visit. All schools held a competition to see who could make the most creative items from recycled materials. The winning students received a monetary prize from the Alfa Women’s Committee. Stokley also encouraged the schools to participate in the PALS’ Annual Poster competition. Sarah Morris from Chatom Elementary even received a Statewide Honorable Mention award for her poster!

Students from three Washington County  schools enjoy a program from PALS campus coordinator Jamie Mitchell. Clockwise from above are students from McIntosh, Millry and Chatom.  

There have been great strides made in Washington County this past year, but the work continues. Stokley’s next mission is to work to bring recycling to Washington County. She is in the process of finding grant money and other resources that will allow these schools to start recycling programs. She plans to build on the success of the “Reuse It” competition as well as have the schools participate in the poster competition again.

Can a school near you use information on keeping Alabama more beautiful? I would love to provide your local schools with more information on the Alabama PALS Clean Campus Program. I can personally help them get a program started! Just have them give me a call at 334-263-7737 or send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Jamie Mitchell is the PALS State Clean Campus Coordinator.