Nurturing eco-warriors among youth

Tengku Zatashah (centre) with Sabri (left) and Tee launching the Inter-school Community Project at Alice Smith School’s Eco-Community Day. — Photos: RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The Star

THE Alice Smith School launched its Eco-Community Day with the presence of Selangor princess Tengku Zatashah Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah.

Head of school Roger Schultz said the Eco-Community Day marked the start of the school’s journey of environmental stewardship.

The event kicked off with the launch of the “Be Remarkable Sustainability” campaign and “Green Thumb” project.

There was also an Inter-school Community Project launch with SMK Seri Kembangan principal Tee Poh Wah and Pintar Foundation, represented by its board of trustee Sabri Abdul Rahman.

In support of the school’s environmental stewardship, Kloth Cares fabric recycling bins were also placed in the school, one at each campus to encourage fabric recycling in the community.

A design competition was held in September to design the fabric recycling bins. Tengku Zatashah presented certificates to the students who won and unveiled the fabric bin for the secondary school’s campus.

The princess also planted a medium-sized merbau tree at the school’s foyer to signify the launch of Eco-Community Day.

Tengku Zatashah planting a merbau tree at the school’s foyer while school alumni Tunku Zain Al-’Abidin (right) looks on.Tengku Zatashah planting a merbau tree at the school’s foyer while school alumni Tunku Zain Al-’Abidin (right) looks on.

In addition, there were talks presented by Free Tree Society president Baida Hercus, Deputy British High Commissioner David Thomas, Biji-biji Initiative and Me.reka chief executive officer Rashvin Pal Singh as well as sustainability advisor for Kloth Cares Najah Onn and Tengku Zatashah.

Tengku Zatashah said environment preservation efforts could start small and even with an individual.

“It does not have to be a whole school, it can be one person to initiate by stopping their single-use plastics habit and start cleaning up beaches.

The founder and advocate of #sayno2plastic and #zerofoodwaste campaign also commented about the bubble tea drinks trend which incurred a huge amount of plastics consumption.

“Feel free to have any drink you like but use your reusable cutlery or tumblers when you are buying it.

“I bring my tiffin carrier with me when I go out to eat and the fact that we implement this zero-waste practice makes us look good,” she said.

She added that it was in 2016 that she began reading a lot about single-use plastics and found out that Malaysia was the world’s eighth-worst plastic polluters and felt there should be greater awareness about this.

“My future hope is there will be more junior eco-warriors as young as 10 years old to be a part of my campaign to clean up Malaysia’s beautiful beaches.

“I believe everyone can take action and make a change for a better future,” she added.

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