Published: 04th August 2021
This 12YO Coimbatore student's phone video bagged her international acclaim. Check out her work inside
Shriya Shruti Misra, a 12-year-old student from Coimbatore, made a home video on sustainability that won her accolades in the international arena
When she decided to apply for the Sustainability Stories Photo and Video Competition, organised by the United Nations University and Technische Sammlungen Dresden in Germany, Shriya Shruti Misra knew that she wanted to highlight the tribals of Meghalaya. The Coimbatore student had been spending her summer in the northeastern state when she heard about the competition. After finding out what she needed to know, Shriya, with her mother Sonal's help, shot a video that won her the second prize in the competition and also earned her a permanent exhibit in Germany.
Living in Meghalaya since her school shut down last year, the 12-year old student knew about the way the tribals live. In her video, which is titled Healing Earth, Shriya highlights how tribes like the Khasi and Garo tribes lead sustainable lives amid nature and refrain from cutting trees. "In the sacred forests of Meghalaya, no one is even allowed to touch the trees," Shriya tells us. In her video too, Shriya tells her viewers about how the tribes choose to build around the trees. "This is a method of sustainable living that's being practised by people right in front of us. Why can't we do the same?" asks Shriya.
The winners are announced
When she decided to enter the competition, Shriya knew she didn't have enough equipment or great editing skills. But what she had was a message that she needed to deliver loud and clear. "We are lucky to have a garden around our house. During this last year, when we were having classes online, I was able to work with my mother and transform the garden and make it greener. I decided to shoot the video there so that I could show the world what I'm talking about," says Shriya, who is a Class VIII student at Chinmaya International Residential School. Shriya submitted the video for evaluation right before the deadline in May and the results of the competition were announced early in July.
Shriya, who is the youngest winner of the competition this year, shot the video entirely using her mother's smartphone. "I had been experimenting with shooting videos during the lockdown. I'm into singing and would usually shoot those videos and post them online. But this competition really helped me explore it more and I would love to continue it," says Shriya. She managed to edit the video entirely using an app-based editor on the phone. "I have been given such a great opportunity and it's only right that I utilise it to inform more people about sustainability," adds Shriya.
Besides a cash prize of €600, Shriya's work has been displayed at the physical exhibition at Dresden, when the competition winners were announced. It will also be part of Wolke 8. The Climate and Us permanent exhibit at Dresden. Indeed, it's always the children who create the loudest of noises when it comes to climate change and sustainability.