Ways to Reduce Waste: Action for Earth – Global Youth Summit

Last month, I was fortunate enough to be invited by Hemispheres Foundation to the inaugural Actions for Earth – Global Youth Summit 2014. Although gone are my days as Young Environment Envoy with the National Environment Agency and Young ChangeMakers with National Youth Council, my attendance at  the closing ceremony had sparkled off my spirit of environment protection and youth activism once again.

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Held on 15-18 January 2014, the theme for the Global Youth Summit  was “Take Action for Earth, Waste No”. I’m highly impressed by the turn out with close to 450 participants from more than 65 institutions in 13 countries. Apart from Singapore, Vietnam and Indonesia sent the most delegates. And there were even participants from Oman present at the youth camp.

Environmental youth activists aged 12 to 21 years old were given an intensive four-day programme with field trips to Singapore’s leading facilities – NEWater plant, Marina Barrage, Semakau Landfill and Incineration Plant.

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The highlight of the Summit was the announcement of the prize winners. Attended by Guest-of-Honour, Member of Parliament, Tampines GRC & Chairman of MCCY Government Parliamentary Committee, Mr Baey Yam Keng.  The top prize in the senior category of City Developments Limited (CDL) – Actions for Earth Award goes to the team “Once Upon A Cow” from Vietnam.

Team leader 18-year-old Dang Minh Hang’s proposal to use empty milk cartons to repair leaking roofs in Vietnam won the heart of the judges for being practical and innovative solution to the problems of overflowing landfills and leaking roofs long endured by the poor living in her country’s rural areas.

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Most roofs in rural Vietnam are made from non-durable materials such as zinc, alabaster slabs or attap. Tetra Pak packaging has an aluminum coating, being waterproof, makes it the best solution for patching leaking roofs.

The next Action for Earth – Global Youth Summit is planned to be held in August 2014. Interested youth activists and schools may contact Hemispheres Foundation for more information.

Passionate youths committed to the goal of sustainable development in their institutional and personal capacities, may contact National Environment Agency (NEA) to find out more about the Youth Environment Envoys (YEEs) programme.

The Young ChangeMakers (YCM) grant supports youth-initiated projects that benefit the Singapore community and society. It also helps to empower youth as decision makers to evaluate projects and mentor project applicants. Find out how you can take actions today, here.

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Singapore Shines at Audi Star Creation 2013

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Audi Star Creation, a regional fashion design competition, identifies and nurtures emerging Asian fashion designers. First held in 2010, it’s an event of the annual Asia Fashion Exhange (AFX); the competition is open to aspiring designers between 16 and 35 years who are Asian citizens. Audi Star Creation is spearheaded by the Textile and Fashion Federation Singapore (TaFf) and sponsored by Audi Singapore and supported by fashion house, F J Benjamin.

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From left: Haziq Putra (Singapore), Sun Yi Jin (China), Odile Benjamin (RAOUL), Vu Ta Linh (Vietnam)

Temasek Polytechnic student from Apparel Design and Merchandising, Haziq Putra‘s “Pursuit to Freedom” took one of the competition’s three top spots. In addition, the 21-year-old also won the Audi Young Designer Award (AYDA), which is given to the winner whose creation best embodies the Audi design spirit of innovation, technology and progression.

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Haziq’s menwear collection featured hand-dyed batik, from which he created a digital print. He also incorporated two distinct Kelantan icons – the Wau Bulan, a giant kite , and the ikan pari, or stingray.

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“I thought the collection was very original and I like the fact you could see his design concept of the stingray flow right through. He was creative but not too over the top with progressive design, much like Audi. At the same time, the collection is very well made and seems to be market-ready. I can even see myself in some of his pieces!” commented Jeff Mannering, Audi Singapore’s Managing Director on Haziq’s design.

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26-year-old Vietnamese, Vu Ta Linh won the judges over with “The Contour”, a womenwear collection inspired by the Vietnamese rice terraces Ruong Bac Thang in Sapa. Linh graduated from Hanoi London College of Fashion Studies in July 2012, and uses stitching, weaving and embroidery to capture the curves and waves of the Vietnamese heritage.

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Bagging the third and final spot was 24-year-old Sun Yi Jin from China, whose womenwear collection drew on the Chinese costumes and handicraft techniques of the 56 ethnic groups in China.

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Commenting on her win, judge David Wang, the Vice President of the Textile and Fashion Federation Singapore, said, “What impressed us most was the fact that the collection draws so strongly on history yet manages to come across as modern. That is exactly what we were looking for with this year’s InspirAsian theme – a designer who was able to dig deep into his/her own culture but emerge with something that would fit right in on the streets of New York or Tokyo.”

Each of the three winners will get $10,000 in cash from Audi Singapore, an internship with leading fashion retailer F J Benjamin and the chance to launch a capsule collection at Audi Star Creation 2014.

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I met my friend, Joel Xiang (in the centre) who is a fashion stylist. To engage him, email him at shangdeshang@gmail.com

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Many thanks to Christian from huneyzworld.blogspot.com for all the lovely photos you have seen here.