On the 10th January EcoBeasts had their first meeting. Over 120 students and their eco passionate teachers from 17 Bangkok schools joined forces to learn about and brainstorm how to tackle sustainability issues as a community. The day was supported by 15 inspiring sustainability projects from around the city and beyond, their workshops raised awareness on their specific area and gave the children realistic actions to implement back at school. The participants also heard 3 inspiring talks from the youth led action projects Grin Green, Plastic Free Nist and the EcoBeasts Action Group. In the afternoon session the schools reunited and developed action plans to move things forward back at school. The energy and positive feedback from the event was inspiring, EcoBeasts has been born and now belongs to us all. Sustainability is about coming together to solve Global problems locally. Collaboration is key, ideas are welcome, there are no egos here! The set up, workshops around the walls, each school had a table in the center. The host school – STA Head Teacher, Paul Schofield welcomes everyone. Kids in Action opening Talk. These students have been developing awareness about plastic pollution around the city for a while, having contributed to the recent plastic bag free day in 7/11 shops. Lily has also just been appointed the Thailand ‘Bye, bye plastic bags’ representative. An inspiring talk to kick off the day. Dominic from Precious Plastics demonstrating how the machines turn plastic waste into something valuable. Dwight and his team from Courageous Kitchen teaching about sustainable and healthy food. Sam developing awareness about the impact of fast fashion, how to avoid clothes waste by up-cycling old clothes. Jen from The Green Room, engaging our students in mindful practice. Being mindful about the way we live and our consumer choices is a big part of sustainability. Kids in Action Talk #2 – Plastic Free Nist, these inspiring students have achieved a high level of sustainability at their school and promote awareness at events around Bangkok. Showing our EcoBeasts that their actions matter. Ik and Style Seal, teaching the Ecobeasts about air pollution, due to Bangkok current AQI rating, something that could not have come at more appropriate time, unfortunately. Antoinette the founder of Chaing Mai based Super Bee, showing how easy it is to find plastic alternatives. Bees wax wraps instead of plastic wraps. A big thanks to Antoinette, who traveled all the way from the north to support our event. Maria, from her Bangkok based company – Soap Opera, demonstrating how to turn used cooking oil into beautiful organic soap. Nap from Love Wildlife educating us about the slow loris and how to help this endangered local animal. The Kayak the Chao Praya team share their journey. We feel very lucky to have caught these guys, fresh off their 14 day kayak trip, where they surveyed, collected trash and educated the local kids about looking after our waterways. Respect. Hannah educating the kids on the global movement that is Trash Hero, which originates from Thailand! Howard from Permaculture Thailand delivers fascinating facts about soil. Paul, from Grin Green International – A student led, ran and designed NGO – delivers a very inspiring and impact-full presentation on how our EcoBeasts can make positive changes around them and for their future. Paul inspires the Ecobeasts with Grin Greens story and mission The awesome Luke from Bambew creating discussion on sustainable alternatives to plastic. He makes bamboo straws among other things and turned up with 150 Ecobeast branded straws to give out at the event. What a star. Diff, a passion driven parent from the host School Saint Andrews, showing our beasts their roof top Eco Garden. An Ecobeast helper from STA, showing how the worm farm makes their nutrient rich compost. Our EcoBricks workshop showed how plastic waste can be repurposed into building bricks. A take away from the day that is easy to implement back at school. Engaged face during presentations Happy EcoBeasts Learning new skills – t-shirts into bags Making new friends, the workshop groups were mixed from all the schools, this enabled every school to see each workshop – 15 workshops and only 3 sessions. It also gave the kids the important role of feeding back to their school. While encouraging discussion and teamwork, the ethos behind sustainability and EcoBeasts. Selfie time with happy faces 🙂 Proud Creations Deep in thought Eco Brick Warriors Learning from others experiences during kids in action talks Team talks and collaboration Creativity is key Plastic Free Nist Pupils talk business Chris a professor from Thanawatt University runs a workshop on the complicated circular economy and how we can align our actions with it. Big ideas at EcoBeasts! Grin Green NGO members, primary students, parents and teachers share their knowledge Listening and learning Zero waste superstar Madeleine delivers her presentation on the Circular Economy to close the morning workshop session. Madeleine introduces Ecobeasts to forward thinking movements, that support a circular economy, like Fat Lama – A clothes sharing initiative, check it out online. A hive of creativity during the afternoon action planning session when the pupils and teachers were reunited to share experiences and develop the next steps for their schools. Lots of great ideas were flowing, true collaboration between the students. Workshop providers were on hand to support developing realistic and actionable goals Child led discussions from their workshop experiences led to actionable goals to implement in school. Powerful stuff! After the main event and once the participating schools left, the hall was open to the host school community for a sustainability market. This allowed our workshop providers (who participated for free) to sell their products and promote their business/project to the wider school community. We invited different sustainability vendors to join us at the market, who enjoyed a very large turnout! The Ecobeast EcoBricks team ran a workshop at the market, troopers! Ending with our awesome branded EcoBeasts Bamboo straws, generously given out to all attendees, by Luke from Bambew, one of our workshops. Fair to say we smashed it. Well done to everyone who collaborated, team effort, pats on the back all round. Watch this space.