140 Youths #Act4SDGs in Bandar Seri Begawan

On 26th of August, Bandar Seri Begawan saw nearly 140 volunteers who braved the morning heat in a collective effort to #leavenoonebehind.

The first batch of volunteers to get dispatched

This event was organized by MY Action For SDGs, a campaign led by the ASEAN MY World 2030 Advocate from Brunei, Nurul Hadina Binti Haji Alias, which aims to raise awareness of the global goals among all strata of society, particularly the youth and children who will inherit the 2030 Agenda.

The day started as early as 5.30 am to set up the booth, together with Reef Check Brunei with a mixture of fun SDG-related games, icon colouring contests for children and a “Save The Turtles” obstacle game to support Goal 14 – Life Below Water.

Games Booth
Reef Check Booth
Volunteers helping with the “Save The Turtles” obstacle game

Simultaneously, groups of volunteers were dispatched to different areas such as the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Complex, Sungkai Kedayan Eco-Corridor, The Royal Wharf and the Royal Regalia Museum. More than 100 ASEAN MY World 2030 survey votes were collected by the volunteers during BandarKu Ceria, a car-free initiative every Sunday morning at the capital to promote a healthy lifestyle where families can enjoy recreational activities.

Volunteers handing out the survey at the Sungai Kedayan Eco-Corridor

By including youth participation both in the campaign and the votes, we hope that young people can have a sense of ownership and play their part in the collective endeavor to achieve a more sustainable world.

54 hours to take action for Sustainable Development Goals in Brunei

The opening of Startup Weekend Bruni Sustainable Development Goals took place on July 20th at the Progresif Cellular Headquarters in Gadong, Brunei.

The theme centered around the Sustainable Development Goals in which the teams’ startup ideas must incorporate at least one or more of the 17 SDGs.

With only 54 hours to put their idea into action, the teams were guided by mentors from a wide range of entrepreneurial backgrounds and the SDG mentor was Nurul Hadina Haji Alias, the ASEAN MY World 2030 Advocate for Brunei.

A team made up of entrepreneurs used their expertise and knowledge to create a workshop filled with challenging yet fun activities to bring participants out of their comfort zone. From learning how to pitch and make a business model canvas, to networking with students from different colleges and universities, whilst providing them with the tools to bridge gaps between trades, the whole event strives to expose the youth’s potential business idea and see those translated into ideas.

Nine teams consisting of youths from different higher institutions and non-government organizations presented their startup idea as the first step to #Act4SDGs in Brunei.

By identifying areas of concern and doing research on marketability, three teams were successful in hitting the judges’ criteria for customer validation, execution and design whilst being a feasible business model.

In the third place, was Tambang.bn for coming up with an idea for water taxi connectivity for Kampong Ayer.

In the second place, Pen of Hope who came up with a business idea for bamboo pens with vegetable seeds.

And the first place winner went to Trash 4 Recycle (T4R) whose business idea is to make an annual planer with recycled paper.

Afiq Mohammed, who is part of the organizing team, shared with us that “With Startup Weekend Brunei Sustainable Development Goals, it enabled more youths and leaders to create more solutions to problems that are not only faced in Brunei but also globally. We are hoping to see a lot of ideas emerge from the event that can leave a greater impact by providing support to those in need. Over 30 sustainable ideas were generated from 53 participants. Each idea was carefully refined and the teams were guided by mentors from diversified backgrounds and organizations.”

He concludes by saying “Although we introduced this platform through entrepreneurship, it allows the participants to see beyond making money but making a positive difference for others. It encourages them to be more aware of their surroundings and be more compassionate for others.”

We really hope to see more of these initiatives to support the youth and the generation now to take action for global goals.

Educating Youths On Sustainable Tourism

Brunei, 24th July – Reef Check Brunei engaged with a total of 140 students to raise awareness about coral reef conservation to support SDG Goal 14 – Life Below Water. The activity used role-playing as a learning tool in teaching Sustainable Tourism. By assuming some of the key stakeholder roles in the development process, 5 groups represented different stakeholders ranging from tourism authorities to local communities such as fishermen to encourage students to apply their knowledge to ‘real-life environment’. The activity aims to help youths today to achieve a greater understanding of the threats to the ocean systems such as pollution and overfishing as well as the fragility of the ocean’s ecosystem.

In order to create a positive change for sustainable development, we must empower the youths with skills, values, and attitudes to contribute to sustainable development. Education and awareness, therefore, plays an important role in ensuring that we currently meet the needs of present society without undermining those of the future.

Reef Check Brunei is a non-governmental organization dedicated to the coral reef conservation through education, research, and awareness. They started in 2016 and aims to create a network of volunteer teams, trained as EcoDivers to regularly monitor and report on reefs health and stimulate actions in protecting and rehabilitating damaged reefs.