The Malaysian Youth Delegation hosted the annual Retreat at EPIC Collective over the weekend of the 28th and 29th April 2018. New members were asked to reflect the activities they took part in, what they learned along the way, and what they took away from the experience. Here’s what our new members had to say:

Renee Tan

By Renee Tan

The term ‘retreat’, which suggests that one is to run away and cower in terror, had the Malaysian Youth Delegation (MYD) executing the exact opposite. Over the course of two days, the team empowered us individuals to take matters into our own hands and to challenge the looming issues of climate change, head-on. I was ready to hop to it, equipped with the newly acquired education from the talks by members of the Malaysian environmental industry.

One of the talks that stood out to me was by Ms Shakila, the head of sustainability at Cenergi who stressed that government policies are not encouraging the industry to make a change in their ways of production. Shakila also touched on the inner workings of Cenergi and explained that the company pens papers to government bodies with the purpose of encouraging them to tailor their policies in a manner that would increase market growth, sustainably. This was an eye-opener to me as I learnt how policies are created and subsequently put into play in the real world which is in line with how the MYD contributes towards the United Nations climate change conferences.

I was exposed to a constant learning process during this period of time be it through the hands on-activities or the knowledge sessions that were wholeheartedly administered by the committee members. Their dedication was evident as I witnessed their passion and drive for the environment which I, in turn, hope to embody as a new member of the MYD family. They also shared their past experiences which I felt was extremely humble of themselves as they got down to the nitty gritty of the mistakes and hardships faced during the lead up to the conferences at the year-end period. It was encouraging to meet and network with a sea of both new and familiar faces – individuals with such rousing spirits for the environment – accompanied by yummy food, laughs and learning. As I wait in anticipation for what’s to come, I am grateful for the privilege of being the voice for the nation’s youth in the field of climate change and am at the ready to contribute to the implementation of new policies.