Tools & Resources
Students Empowered in a Conference on Water and Sustainability
Sungkai, Perak: The seventh WWF-Malaysia’s International Eco-Schools Conference (IESC) commenced from 9 to 13 December 2018 at SMK Sungkai with participation by schools from Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines and Indonesia. Every year, more than 100 Eco-Schools students gather to share and exchange knowledge on their schools’ environmental initiatives. This inspiring platform is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and this year’s focus is - Water, the Source of Life.
In recent years, Malaysia has seen a higher frequency and more intense dry spells, which has affected water resources in many parts of the country. Apart from field trips, the conference also features expert speakers from the water industry to speak on this growing concern.
"We use water daily, yet the average user knows so little about the challenging journey water takes to reach everyone. Globally, our rivers face many threats such as plastic pollution and sedimentation (due to logging in water catchments) and so on," said Datin Daria Mathew, WWF-Malaysia's Senior Manager for Freshwater Conservation. "We need to empower every water user, such as the IESC delegates, about freshwater conservation so they can make informed and better choices for our planet.”
She added, "This is why WWF-Malaysia organises freshwater-themed events such as the Journey of Water and the Water Quest, and this year, we are proud to have a freshwater-themed IESC for the first time.”
YBhg Datin Sri Hajah Nor Zamani from the Ministry of Education commented, “The third shift of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013 to 2025 aims to develop values-driven Malaysians. This conference prepares students to face the issues of environmental degradation. When they are exposed beyond the school ground and are connected to the global awareness – they will become individuals with a strong conscience. This is one of the virtues of education – to develop holistic students that value a balanced view and harmony.”
She added, “I hope the conference will also discuss other areas of the SDGs in relation to water, focusing not only the issues but also approaches to solve the problems in a long run.”
WWF-Malaysia and partners created this platform for students to share their work, ideas and passion with other students of different backgrounds, nationalities and races. We want to empower young people to care for the environment so they can lead sustainability related activities and influence others to follow.
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For more information, please contact:
Sr Communications Officer, Education for Sustainable Development Programme, WWF-Malaysia
Tel: +6019-327 5456
Communications Manager (Freshwater), Peninsular Malaysia Terrestrial Conservation Programme
Tel: +603-7450 3773
Improving life on land for indigenous communities
In support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), students and staff of Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, in collaboration with Camfil Malaysia, the National Education for Sustainable Development Work Group and WWF-Malaysia embarked on a community education initiative on May 19 2018 at the Kg Batu 20 indigenous village in Tapah, Perak.
The main aim of the programme was to build capacity of the villagers on sustainable lifestyles motivated from the solar based rural electrification efforts. The initiative also hoped to instil an entrepreneurial mindset amongst the community as a measure to improve their well-being.
Among other activities, we also conducted energy audit of the households, a rural electrification seminar, colouring activities and games for the children, as well as a community workshop with the youths of the village to enable them to gain a better view of starting a small business.
Feedback gained from the community indicated that the programme was indeed helpful, and they look forward to putting into motion the ideas gained from the sessions.
The success of this programme is attributed to the collaborative efforts resulting from industry-academia-NGO-community partnerships for sustainability, in line with SDG17, Partnership for the Goals. Other SDGs mapped to the programme include SDG7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), SDG11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities) and SDG13 (Climate Action)
Youth Dedicated Earth Day to Malaysia’s Most Iconic Wildlife – Pak Belang
Petaling Jaya: WWF-Malaysia’s storytelling platform, Sembang@WWF saw youth dedicating Earth Day to the plight of Malayan Tiger this year. Hundreds of young adults came from all across Malaysia to witness their fellow friends taking the stage to speak passionately about one of the world’s most iconic wildlife – Pak Belang.
With only as few as 250 Malayan tigers left in the wild, Malaysia is racing against time to save our national symbol from extinction. Hence, the fourth edition of Sembang@WWF aimed to illustrate the various factors that contribute to the extinction of this species, its connection to the everyday Malaysian, as well as to explore the role of youth in tiger conservation.
With the magic of storytelling which connects us to humanity, Sembang@WWF was created four years ago as an opportunity for students to speak on various environmental issues. Held each year in conjunction with the Global Earth Day, the event aims to engage and transport the students’ mind to stories on poverty, haze, wildlife poaching, shark finning and this year it’s all about tigers.
“I’m pleased to see how Sembang@WWF has gained momentum over the years. We received more participation at the school and campus level this year. It was a tough decision to choose the final presenters to speak at the national level. This speaking platform is an instrument for us to listen and share ideas on what we can do as individuals to make a change for a better environment,” said Mr Thiagarajan Nadeson, Head of Markets and Education.
He added, “Youth present the voices of tomorrow, they will be our future teachers, policy makers, voters and will play many other important roles. The exposure should begin from now, so they will be able to make informed decisions and willing to change their mindset and behaviours for a more sustainable future.”
“Sembang@WWF is a great platform for people like me to share our thoughts, views and aspirations for a better Malaysia – one that is aware and sensitive to our environmental issues. This year’s theme on tiger conservation has really helped me to understand the dilemma of the Malayan tiger better. I really hope today’s talks will inspire youth to do more for our tigers,” said one of the speakers, Delisha Kaur Boparai from SMK Damansara Jaya.
Five young conservation heroes took the stage to speak about the significance of tigers to our ecosystem, the threats to their existence, and the role that youth can play to support the conservation of the species in this digital age. A special Silat Harimau (Malay art of self-defense) show was also demonstrated to prove that the tiger’s existence goes beyond the Malay’s folk-tales or proverbs; as the animal is symbolic to Malay culture, portraying bravery and power.
The half day event at Sunway Nexis, Kota Damansara also featured a forum discussion titled “Joining the Conversation: What It Really Takes to Save Our Stripes”. Expert speakers from the Malaysian Conservation Alliance for Tigers (MYCAT), TRAFFIC, Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) and WWF-Malaysia sat down together to enlighten participants in deepening their current understanding of challenges and issues surrounding tiger conservation efforts in our country.
“If the tiger were to go extinct in Malaysia over the next decade, what would we say to the next generation? How would we explain to them that we let this majestic creature, a symbol of bravery and courage, slip through in our efforts of aspiring to be a sustainably developed country? This is why what we do today matters in inspiring action for the future,” added Dr Mark.
The Eco Champion Awards ceremony also took place to recognise the effort and passion of teachers as well as students from the Eco-Schools and Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) EcoCampus programmes. Special awards were presented to commendable individuals who were involved in sustainable initiatives within their schools, campus and surrounding communities.
Education for Sustainable Development Programme, WWF-Malaysia
~Empowering Citizens of Tomorrow~
For more information, please contact:
Senior Communications Officer of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Programme, WWF-Malaysia
Tel: +603-7450 3773
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