Samoa’s Envirobassadors on the move

By Aruna Lolani 29 June 2017, 12:00AM

Working together to keep Samoa clean.

You’ve heard many say this but we all know that actions speak louder than words.

And that is why Jorim Paul Phillips has implemented a new community initiative called ‘Envirobassadors’, a community engaged in helping the environment and keeping Samoa clean.

Jorim as the leader for the Envirobassadors team. They carried out their first clean-up last week, Friday around the Vaitele area.

It took them two hours to collect 19 bags of rubbish around the area.

“The clean up that we did at Vaitele happened after school and it was with a bunch of kids at my school, 21 kids from Fa’atuatua College,” he said.

“When I got the first couple of kids on board, all the rest of my class started wanting to join in so it was really cool, when they saw each other’s enthusiasm towards keeping the environment clean, they were really eager to help.

“This was our first official clean up as our group the Envirobassadors, which can be found on Facebook online. 

“We wanted it to be a community for not just students in our school but for the whole of Samoa, that if they want to keep the environment clean, they can join our future clean-ups because we will have other clean-ups in different locations; wherever we see pollution. 

“In our team, whoever wants to join they come, whoever comes to our clean-up is considered as an Envirobassador, because they are being the ambassadors for the environment.

“Now in our group we’ve got about close to ten kids who help run the Envirobassadors with me as the leader and right now, we’ve got like around 40 to 50 kids who are getting interested in helping out.”

Jorim said he has always been inspired by the idea of keeping our environments clean and that is why he started the Envirobassadors initiative.

“Recently this year in April, I went to a conference called Y.E.L.F. (Youth Environmental Leadership Forum) and my mind is really opened up to environmental problems so I thought that I would actually start the group.

“I just try and make time. You know there’s always going to be a little bit of time that I can do some good and a little bit of time that our team can do something good for the environment and for the community and it’s just a matter of seeing the problems around you.

“The overall goal for our team is just create awareness to Samoans and to help make a change because a lot of people, they are very careless with what they do, they don’t think that their actions will have an effect on the environment and they’ll just throw rubbish here and there but everybody’s actions has a great impact on the environment.

“Our Samoan culture depends a lot on the environment, depends a lot on the sea and on the forest and we need to realize that.

“We get our food from the sea, our food from the forest and if we don’t treat it right, our beautiful oceans and forests won’t be here for the future generations. 

“They won’t get to enjoy it and they won’t get to prosper from it. 

“We want people to think about everyone else and not just them.

“So hopefully our next goals, before the end of next week, is to do another clean up infront of Apia with beaches and across the seawall. 

“That’s going to be our next project and it will be advertised on our Facebook page.”

By Aruna Lolani 29 June 2017, 12:00AM

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