An Auckland schoolgirl has delivered a speech to her school's Board of Trustees urging them to commit to a #WaterOnlySchools policy.
Alana Wilson, 10, a student of Shelly Park School in Auckland, says she was inspired by The Project host Jesse Mulligan's opinion article published on Monday calling for schools to stop allowing fizzy drinks.
"I thought it was a great idea so I went over to our school's Board of Trustees meeting and I gave them a speech proposing that we should do it too," Alana told The Project on Friday.
- Jesse Mulligan: It's time to make schools water-only
- Former Prime Minister Helen Clark backs #WaterOnlySchools campaign
Alana's dad Peter helped her write the speech she delivered to the school's board.
He said he was "exceptionally proud seeing her stand up in front of the board and putting forward an idea which is great for the school and all schools should do it. It was inspiring."
Alana told Mulligan she saw his article and "thought it was a great idea and that our school should do it too."
"Every year, 29,000 Kiwi kids have teeth pulled due to cavities and infection, with 7000 having to be put under general anaesthetic," Mulligan wrote in his article.
Two years ago, the Government recommended schools move to a water-only policy, but they didn't make it compulsory.
"But now we're saying let's get it done - let's give our kids their best chance of a healthy life by flipping as many schools as we can to water-only," says Mulligan.
He told Alana on The Project that they would be donating her school a brand new yellow water fountain worth around $2000, courtesy of filtersandfountains.co.nz.
Former Prime Minister Helen Clark is backing the idea to encourage schools in New Zealand to ban sugary drinks and go 'water-only'.
She joined The Project on Monday evening to explain why she's backing the #WaterOnlySchools campaign.
"Sugary drinks are the main source of sugar for our children, so just by doing this one thing we could do a tremendous amount," Ms Clark said.