Published: 26th September 2019
This Kerala designer kickstarted a campaign to help young followers of Greta Thunberg live a greener life
Titled For A Greta Cause, the guidelines range from using cloth bags and ink pens. Most options are economical too
Undoubtedly, Greta Thunberg has taken the world by storm. When the 16-year-old asked world leaders questions that not many dared to ask, most adults could do nothing but watch helplessly. Following Greta's footsteps, millions of young people across the world took part in climate strikes on September 20.
While this was lauded by many, there were a few obvious questions raised — do all these little activists actually stick to the eco-friendly way of life? Knowingly or unknowingly, many would have contributed to harming the planet. So, an adult decided to come up with a campaign to help these Gen Z eco-warriors out with green tips that can actually reduce their carbon footprint.
Designer and social entrepreneur Lakshmi Menon, who is popular for creating upcycled products has come up with a campaign called For A Greta Cause, where she has given a set of guidelines for school students to follow in order to live in an eco-friendly way. "The younger generation is blaming us for damaging the planet. We're ready to take the blame. But at the same time, we have solutions too," says Lakshmi. "We're here telling them about a few things that we did when we were younger that they can also follow." The list ranges from using cloth schoolbags, using the same bags and umbrellas for years, switching to ink pens and using pencil boxes made out of metal or cloth.
"I remember using the same school bag for five years straight as a child. Most of us never bought new umbrellas every year. In fact, I used the same ink pen from class V to XII. Most people my age would have done the same. Here, we're challenging the younger people to do the same," she says. She is also in talks with the Haritha Keralam Mission to develop biodegradable products for school students and make them available from the next academic year. Also, there are plans to add a section about using green products in the curriculum.
"The aim is to flood the market with these products. That way, they can't complain about the unavailability," she says. "At the same time, let the young generation stop using plastic bottles and boycott food delivery platforms that do not use eco-friendly ways of delivering. If school students are striking for climate, they have to make sure that they stick on to these alternatives," she adds. She also suggests that schools can appreciate these students who follow these ways of life.