Have you ever wondered what it takes to create transformational impacts in the community?
As an environmental consultant, Olivia was able to take her passions to new heights upon volunteering on a project aimed at addressing the environmental sustainability issues faced at Gombak, Malaysia. This was done in collaboration with her fellow ASEAN Youth Changemakers. In this feature, Olivia shares more about the eMpowering Youths Across ASEAN (EYAA) experience, and tips to make a difference during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Could you tell us about your EYAA community project?
My project was to build organic farming and to educate people in Gombak (near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) on the importance of organic farming and the use of black flies to turn organic waste into organic fertilizer. On top of that, we also, did some fun activities when we were free such as an outing to the nearby forest and a trip to Genting highlands.
What your passions and contributions were?
I am an environmental consultant, so my passion is always been environmental issues and I am glad that I was selected to volunteer on the issues that are close to my heart. My contribution was to work in the organic farm, collecting organic waste in neighbourhoods (supermarket and restaurant), develop an educational curriculum on organic waste, and conducting presentations in school and during organic farm open house. I was also interviewed by a radio station and the local newspaper to boost awareness of the programme.
What you learnt from collaborating with other Youth
I learnt a lot about the similarities of culture among ASEAN countries. I really enjoyed our bounding time-sharing stories that make me understand better other ASEAN country's situations through my fellow ASEAN’s personal stories. I also learnt that we if can collaborate on a personal level, we can definitely make ASEAN Community work at the state level.
Any tips for the EYAA: Cohort Two who are facing the COVID-19 season and are wanting to kickstart in making a positive the difference in the community?
My tip is to keep your spirit high because it would be worth it. It is a life-changing experience with EYAA: the bounding, the knowledge, and the experience. Bring your best during the preparation and implementing the project because you will learn a lot from it, and you can bring it to your professional career.