Planetary Health & Sustainability
Young Changemakers building a better future for people & planet
Ashoka | Luan T., Ara Kusuma, Rafa J.
Welcome Change: What comes next, starts now!
Young people have deservedly been in the spotlight as the leaders of new climate action movements around the world. But don’t be fooled! Young people are not simply outraged and anxious about the future of our planet. They are also leading us into a brighter future, crafting real solutions to address the problems that surround us.
Join us on November 3, to see the future through the eyes of young changemakers from Indonesia & Brazil. With pragmatic optimism, Ara, Luan & Rafa are addressing e-waste, deforestation and sustainable agriculture. Whether or not they are the ones making decisions at this year’s COP26, there is no doubt they are forging a critical path forward.
What is Welcome Change? Meet the world’s best social entrepreneurs and get an insider look at what works, and what’s next. All topics, all geographies, every Wednesday (alternating time zones). Sign-up for the series: www.next-now.org/follow
This conversation is hosted by Ashoka’s the Next Now: Planet & Climate as part of Berlin Science Week.
PUBLIC TALK ON ZOOM. PLEASE REGISTER.
This is a digital event. If you would like to attend, please book your spot here. Access to the event will be provided after registration by the organiser.
Luan is determined to protect the health of people and the planet in the northeastern region of Brazil. With a few like-minded friends, he founded Casa (Social and Environmental Support Center), to address social and environmental issues in their community. Noticing that deforestation and unrestrained CO2 emissions led to poor agricultural production and, ultimately, hunger, Luan and his friends started planting fruit trees so that everyone, especially low-income residents, could access fresh, organic fruit for free. Today, CASA is led by 19 young people who are dedicated to environmental changemaking. Luan became an Ashoka Young Changemaker in 2019.
Ara started her changemaking journey early. At the age of 10, she fell in love with cows and was devastated when she saw the conditions in many dairy production farms. She founded Project Moo to surface and share innovations among 150 village farmers to increase dairy production in a more sustainable way, creating a better life for the cows and the farmers alike. Since then, Ara has founded several other organizations with a strong education focus. Her latest one emerged during the pandemic. She founded Aha Project, to provide creative home-schooling kits for underprivileged children in rural areas in Indonesia. She also leads Ashoka’s Young Changemaker program in Indonesia.
Starting with a research question for a school project, RJ learned about the gross negligence of tech companies and lack of oversight by the government for electronic waste (e-waste). E-waste can be extremely toxic, a growing concern for environmental and public health. He turned his research project into a book and later started EwasteRJ, with a team of young people to educate the public on the dangers of e-waste and the proper way to process it. They also advocate for the government and companies to be responsible for their environmental impact, and partner with other organizations for proper recycling of electronic waste. Rafa became an Ashoka Young Changemaker in 2019.