Coming together to campaign for our Earth
By Patricia Hului
While social media sites like Facebook and Twitter celebrated ‘Earth Day’ last Apr 22, a group of environmental enthusiasts here in Kuching also joined in the fun.
The group who called themselves Climate Change Community ran a campaign called ‘Earth is our home’ where they held an exhibition of recycled art pieces and an art jam session which saw several artists including Art and Design students from Universiti Technology Mara (UiTM) come together to produce Earth-themed paintings.
One of the invited talents was Mohd Najib Rithauddin Chobi whose day job is as a deco artist at Boulevard Shopping Mall.
“I’m drawing earth in the centre and using warm colours to paint around it signifying global warming,” Najib said of this artwork made up of water bottle caps arranged tightly and glued to a wooden board.
As for Evelyn Udtohan Perol from Milestone Early Intervention, she came to the event to learn more about using recycled items in producing art to teach the special needs’ children at the centre.
“Milestone Early Intervention is an education and healthcare facility focusing on children with learning difficulties,” Evelyn said. One of the activities at the centre is arts and crafts.
“I am hoping to teach some of the techniques to my students by looking at these artists,” she said. “They are using materials such as plastic bottles, eggshells and hopefully we can do the same things at the centre.”
The organisers also provided a space for the public to donate their recycled items.
According to the organising chairman Ian Carter, this is the first time the group had an event as a collaborative unit under the name Climate Change Community.
The community which is still in its infancy after meeting up few weeks ago, is made up of several environmental-based organisations including Go Go Green, MaNoy Handicrafts, and Flytech.
“We have a mix of people but each one with the same objective which is to combat climate change,” said Carter who is also the founder of Go Go Green society.
Go Go Green is an NGO raising awareness on cutting down the use of plastic bags around Kuching while MaNoy Handicrafts has been converting recycled items into decorative items and Flytech is the company behind WormingUp Project, an effort to reduce food waste.
“We had to start somewhere. It has been a success in some way that we are able to sit down and chat about things,” adding that the number of the community is growing.
The inaugural event Riverside Shopping Complex ran from 10am till 5pm. Carter hoped this campaign will be a monthly event and looks forward to bring it to other venues in order to reach out to more people.