Being mindful about the environment – why we need to take action now

In the recent months I have had a sort of environmental awakening. It all started with my decluttering process (you can read all about it here) during which I watched way too many declutter-, KonMari- and organization videos. My YouTube lifestyle video watchlist soon continued to exploring from KonMari to minimalism, and then on to Zero Waste lifestyle videos, and documentaries on waste cycles, fast fashion and so forth.

YouTube isn’t the only source to blame for my sudden climate anxiety. Environmental issues have lately been one of the hottest conversation topics with me and my friends. And not just us. 16-year old Swede Greta Thunberg just inspired students worldwide to attend a climate strike, and just this Saturday people gathered in Helsinki to march for the climate. People are clearly calling policy-makers into action, and only recently the EU Parliament approved a law banning single-use plastics. In Finland, we have the parliamentary elections this week, and environmentalism is one of the main issues that decide our votes.

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Work experience

I had the immense pleasure to be working as a language teacher last week. It was a great change to my regular student life, although it did add to my already ginormous workload. However, I got so much out of it, I am glad I did end up going for it.

Same place, different role

So I was working as a language teacher at an exchange student camp. The exchange students arrive to the camp for a week, before continuing to their host-families. The idea is to get them accustomed to the time-difference, new culture, and new language.

Now, I’d been at the camp many times before, but as a tutor. My role then was to aid the language teacher during the lessons, as well as follow the exchange students to their other activities and excursions, leading them in outdoor activities and overall acting as their older sibling and guide for the week.

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Violence is never the answer

One of the recent incidents in USA has not only greatly affected those involved, but is raising questions and discussions all over the world. I am, of course, talking about the mass school shooting in Florida on February 14th.

What I find alarming that this year alone, there have already been 17 or 18 gun incidents at schools in the US. That’s about two incidents per week. According to CNN, eight of these incidents resulted in victims dead or injured (not including the shooter). The discussions mainly revolve around firearm legislation.

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