Being a volunteer for ADRECC gave us the wonderful chance to participate in inspiring conservation projects while staying on the breathtaking tropical Dinawan island.
When it comes to nature conservation, probably all of us already came to the conclusion that this is a task that can not be achieved by a few passionate fellows around the globe. Traveling through Southeast Asia for a few month now already, we realized another problem we were not aware of initially: a lack of basic structures and prerequisites to involve everyone in sustainable behavior. To give a very simple but momentous example: in many areas waste management remains a personal responsibility without any established processes on the level of the municipality. When people have to burn their own rubbish how can they have awareness for recycling, reduction of plastic waste, or garbage separation?
In our time as volunteers at ADRECC, we created “don’t litter” signages for the beach and an educational video explaining simple rules of trash management. We also build recycling bins for different types of waste – a task we loved for different reasons:
- The bins are a central requirement for waste separation. They build the foundation of the process to change people’s habits.
- Having the bins around the island gives guests but also everyone else, including the staff and volunteers, the chance to handle their garbage more careful.
- Once, a system of bins is established, simply their existence will educate people because they start thinking about their habits when they stand in front of multiple containers with waste in their hand.
Eventually, the bins make a contribution towards less garbage on the island, on the beach and in the water. Maybe, they even initiate a mindset change for some.