5 Minutes With Cindy Lee

What’s your passion?
I am passionate about Africa, especially sustainability in the continent. I grew up in a part of the country where there weren’t many people but plenty of wildlife we had sheep and goats. When I was younger my grandfather would share stories about his childhood and about the nature that surrounded us. At that time I knew I loved the outdoors, my grandfather sparked my interest – he was my mentor. 

What change are you keen to drive?
Highlighting the importance of nature and the integral part it plays in our lives. I want to educate people about the environment and make them aware that it’s where we come from and that the health of our natural system is directly linked to our sustainability. 

How are you driving change?
I drive a section of the NPO Nature’s Valley Trust that raises awareness of various conservation factors. Our interventions highlight the important role nature plays in our lives and the significance of conserving our environment in our daily activities.
 We find out what people need to live sustainably and fulfil those needs. For example we encourage recycling and will educate people on the various ways of recycling. We provide education and awareness through hosting workshops, talks and events in communities and schools.

We also work closely with the Bitou District and whenever they host community events they will invite us to give a talk or host a workshop on conservation.   

How has ACTIVATE! supported you so far in driving this change?
The one thing that truly helped me, was how to deal with people that work in the government sector and understand the various structures and roles. Networking has been the most important tool for me. I have learned to learn from people who have a common goal. The interaction with like-minded Activators has been brilliant and has assisted my growth immensely. Because of ACTIVATE! I now have a network of brilliant experts.

How do you motivate yourself?
I think about the appreciation I receive from community members or the interest from learners when we host interventions in schools. Those are the kind of things that keep me motivated. My drive for change is also my constant motivator, I want to see things get better in Africa. The spirit of the African people inspire me!

Final comment?
I want everybody to live a life with dignity. For every house to be a green house, for every person to live green and for everyone to realise that we all play a part in making things better. My advice to everyone would be to start living sustainably at home. Start small, fix a tap if it’s leaking. That’s where it starts and play…. Just play outside with your children. Tell them stories and get them excited about nature. 

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