The Zero Waste Youth Experience in Vienna

Updated: Jul 10, 2020

What do you think about going to Austria with a mission: talk about what you believe. Doesn't it look beautiful?

That's exactly what George Koshi, Founder of Green Contributor, provided to a member of Zero Waste Youth in November 2019.

GreenContributor Inc., a Canadian organization, has been involved in environmental and educational initiatives, and offers global entrepreneurship opportunities and research-based programs to students from around the world, to universities and business schools. In addition, it has developed programs that offer opportunities to students to address issues that impact communities and motivate them to be ambassadors for change.

In order to promote and create an impact, Zero Waste Youth organized in 2019 in Cascais, European youth capital of 2018, the fifth international meeting of the Zero Waste Youth Movement. This meeting gained a new name and methodology: WE ARE with the event structure divided from the principles of the Golden Circle, by Simon Sinek. To find out more details about the event click here.

Camila Lucena was a member of the WE ARE organizing team chosen by the team to have this experience.

It was a dream: to travel around the world representing the movement that I believe to spread the idea and engage more people. However, they are not just roses but also a challenge.

The trip was purchased on the final night of the event and from then on, among post-event commitments, she had to organize a trip and contacts in Vienna in the space time of a month and manage to do it all inside the travel period, 35 hours.

The capital of Austria is a city that offers new experiences to the citizens of the world. And a picture is worth a thousand words.

The day before leaving, Camila still didn't have a place to sleep, luckily for her, Carla, a friend, invited to sleep at her house! Carla works for the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) Climate-KIC, a European community of knowledge and innovation, working for a prosperous, inclusive and climate-resilient society founded on a circular economy without carbon. Therefore, resuming this connection with her was of great value for the trip, because in addition to providing a place to stay she had all the network Camila was looking for.

So, despite the rush, the trip was of great value and very well used. Camila established a connection with Fiona Pulda, @wastelady who, based on guidelines and cooperation, will be able to start the Austrian Zero Waste Youth hub. Also, it was created a relationship with the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences - Boku, one of the best European universities in the life sciences, offering a decisive contribution to the preservation, development and protection of the living space and quality of life - at the local and global level; however, they still do not have the vision and concept of zero waste. And also, Camila had the chance to visit the co working Impact Hub Vienna, where Carla works. The Impact Hub is one of the largest networks in the world focused on building entrepreneurial communities for impact at scale - home to innovators, dreamers and entrepreneurs who are creating tangible solutions to the world's most pressing issues. Zero Waste Youth Movement is already mentored by Impact Hub Lisboa and Florianopolis.

We believe in cooperation and collaboration between people and movements. And this trip was only successful thanks to these principles. Zero Waste Youth is very grateful to everyone who helped to build this experience, but mainly to George Koshy who was involved and thanks to his partnership with Algalita, Charles Moore, speaker and friend of WE ARE, Captain oceanographer who discovered and currently studies the Great Pacific Garbage Path.

Author: Camila Lucena

Civil Engineer

Permaculture Designer

Social & Environmental Activist

Yoga teacher for kids

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