Environmental Sustainability, Greater Accessibility to STEM Education, and Youth Leadership Empowerment
Earthwise Lebanon (EWL)
Earthwise Lebanon is a new branch of Project Aquascope, located in Beirut, Lebanon. Following the recent explosion, our Aquascope Ambassadors are especially passionate about spreading environmental awareness and education in their country!
"The biggest challenge we will have to face is the environmental crisis that has already begun. Not doing what’s necessary to solve this issue is practically destroying our society and condemning future generations. I believe saving our environment should be the top priority for everyone."
ZEINA EL ACHKAR
"It saddens me to see how careless we are towards our planet, which we call home. Would we destroy our own household deliberately? I don't think we would. This applies to our mother nature as well. Let us all unite and fix what we started."
"I have a close relationship with the environment because I see myself and every one of us as a part of it; the environment is as unique as each one of us, so by destroying it we are doing the same to ourselves, to one another, and to the future of the human race on this planet."
"I see that a lot of people either choose to ignore, or aren't conscious of the fact that our planet is dying. I think that spreading climate/environmental knowledge around our community in Lebanon to inform future generations to protect the environment is a huge step in the right direction."
"Earth has given humans so much over time: more than anyone and anything. It is time we unite and give our planet the same care we would provide a human being. Rather than contributing to the degradation of our world, I aspire to be at a place where the environment doesn’t even need protection, because our systems and habits as a human race are compatible with the health of this planet."
"Our environment is the one thing all of us share and instead of preserving it, we are destroying it and refusing to deal with the consequences. I think we need to relearn how to be human and treat our environment with compassion."
WORKSHOPS + PROJECTS
Earth Wise Lebanon (EWL) hosted a series of workshops in December centered on the water crisis and waste management. A total of three one-hour sessions were held with 50 middle and high school participants in Lebanon. The sessions started off with picture-based presentations where the EWL team introduced the topics of water crisis and waste management both in Lebanon and around the world. Following these presentations, EWL opened up to Q&A which transitioned into various debates, conversations, and interactive activities—including watching and analyzing the Netflix documentary “Our Planet: Freshwater.” Towards the end of each session, participants were encouraged to design and pitch their own projects targeting the water crisis and/or waste management. Four teams of 2-3 students each—two for water crisis and two fro waste management—have project ideas they wish to pursue. EWL is currently helping them solidify their project goals, methodology, and deliverables for implementation in early 2021.
One project idea is to collect as much food waste as possible—food that wasn’t being used—from different places to compost it in efforts to solve part of the waste crisis. Discovering how retailers in the U.S. and Europe primarily cater to the perfectionist shopper who prefers only the plump, round tomato or the unblemished apple, leading farmers to toss out huge amounts of food that fail to meet such cosmetic standards, EWL seeks to address this waste issue and put to use all food—whether aesthetically-pleasing or not—to make a bigger impact. Yet, this is just one team’s project proposal out of the four teams of youth who are motivated to take action. In the following months, EWL is hosting numerous meetings with these teams to help them actualize their proposal and reaching out to local sponsors to support them in the process. While these projects are going on, EWL is also brainstorming more topics for future workshops which they plan to hold throughout the year.