Here are some more reflections from students from our July ChangeIt program with Greenpeace. There is the montage v-log, and the written piece below. --WR
From Laura Noll:
In Robert Putnam's book Bowling Alone , he examines the relatively recent decline of social capital in the United States and how this trend is impacting the individual. Like Seventh Generation, Greenpeace, and other like minded organizations, he advocates rebuilding a sense of community at the grassroots level. The ChangeIT program was an excellent example of how this can be done and the empowering impact it can have on young people, in particular. Congratulations on bringing a sense of optimism to our group. It is my hope that I will be able to pass that positivity along to all of the people I meet and that you will continue to inspire others.
On the plane home I sat next to two older ladies, both retired. After the 'fasten seat belt' sign had been turned off, the lady to my right asked if she could get up and then apologized for disturbing me. "People don't disturb each other enough!" I replied without thinking. She looked slightly confused and a bit taken aback until I went on to explain that "people don't talk to each other enough these days." To my surprise this initiated a rather boisterous conversation about isolation that proceeded to draw the second lady. "Excuse me," she interrupted, "I don't mean to eavesdrop but your conversation is just very interesting and I would like to be part of it." It wasn't long before we and people from the four surrounding rows were engaged in a lively discussion about young people, the state of the world, and practically every topic imaginable. It was fantastic to see how easy people opened up and how much they wanted to participate rather than sit alone in silence. All it took was reaching out to one person.
This experience is one of many gifts the experience at ChangeIT gave me. Thank you. I strongly believe that coming together as a community, communicating, learning, and finally connecting with each other (and our shared future!) is the first step to creating a sustainable future.