“It was really reassuring and empowering for me to see so many people, despite different cultural backgrounds and careers, shared the same concerns towards our mother planet, demonstrated the similar growth mindset during the enriched forum discussion and group communication.”
As one of Earth Charter Young Leader and Asia &Pacific Regional Coordinator at Earth Charter International, Shaohua Wang was an alumna of the LSE course and served as Project Officer for the organization in early 2021. Most people in the office and at the university call her Lizzie. After finishing her second Masters degree in Gender and Peacebuilding at UPEACE, Shaohua applied and was recommended to conduct a 9-month internship with IOM Costa Rica Country Office. Shaohua was able to see the operations on the ground for vulnerable population and sought for ways to understand the nexus of nature, people and society. That was precisely the reason she chose to take LSE during her internship with IOM. Shaohua kept her exploration in the international development and humanitarian area by joining UNICEF NYHQ since October, 2021.
Like many other course participants, Shaohua had additional responsibilities other than the course. She was doing a full-time internship abroad. Therefore, she appreciated the flexibility of the course that allowed her to work on the course at a suitable moment during her week. Even though she was busy, she enjoyed following the course and put a lot of effort into it.
“I do believe that the whole concept of the course is very important. The outcome may not show immediately. Though I do wish to cultivate myself in an environment where practice and knowledge are embedded into one’s learning, growing, and gradually their daily life which influence personal choice, future decision, the relationship we have with ourselves, others and the Earth.”
Shaohua’s course highlight was to learn about Systems Thinking and to realise how interconnected everything is.
“With many thanks to the Systems Thinking I tried not to see things as isolated parts, I became more aware of the value of the complexity of life – that’s the reality.”
Towards the end of the course, Shaohua designed a workshop surrounding “water”, one substance that we can’t live without. It could be so easy to take what we already have, e.g., portable water, for granted, which is a luxury for a huge population in the world. With the negative effect of the Global Warming, how we perceive, utilize, and preserve water is more than just a simple problem for drinking. She combined Systems Thinking, eco-literacy, the Sustainable Development Goals, and a reflection of the audiences’ individual behaviour towards water use during her session. Through facilitating this workshop, she became a multiplier of the Earth Charter values and principles.
Together with two other Young Leaders, Shaohua set up the Asia and Pacific regional group of Earth Charter Young Leaders, in order to unite this subgroup under a common context and time zone, while at the same time contributing to the larger Earth Charter Young Leaders Network.