Formed in March 2018, Youth in Sustainability (YIS) is a youth community programme that aims to increase awareness about responsible consumption and climate action in Indonesia. Working in collaboration with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), this voluntary community of 30 members is based in three cities in Indonesia: Jakarta, Bandung and Yogyakarta. In each location, YIS has launched a youth-oriented campaign, geared towards encouraging food waste reduction (Yogyakarta), ecolabel recognition (Bandung) and waste management (Jakarta), respectively. As consumers and future leaders, Indonesia’s youth play a key role in urging their favourite brands to source only sustainable raw materials, such as certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO).
ToT Sessions Leading the Way
To raise awareness of sustainability among the nation’s youth, YIS organised a series of ‘Training of Trainers’ (ToT) sessions in Indonesia. Through engagement with industry professionals, the ToT sessions act as a capacity-building initiative for selected YIS participants, who will in turn provide training to other members within their respective communities. The first session was held in Jakarta in October 2018 and the second event was in Yogyakarta in November 2018. Several experts were involved in the ToT sessions, including Zakiyus Shadicky (Engagement & Insight Manager, Indonesia Plastic Bag Diet Movement), who spoke about young people’s consumption behaviour and how this could have a massive impact on the environment. Christian Natalie (Programme Coordinator, Hutan Itu Indonesia) also shared his insights and tips about how to create and deliver a campaign that is both positive and impactful.
Introducing the RSPO Trademark
Imam A. El Marzuq (Community Outreach & Engagement Manager, RSPO) spoke about sustainability in the context of palm oil, and how essential palm oil is to our daily lives. He also emphasised that if palm oil is not produced sustainably, it can have a negative impact on both the environment and farmers’ livelihoods. During the session, participants were introduced to the RSPO Trademark as an ecolabel, to help them identify products that use CSPO. Each session closed with participants pitching their own campaign ideas.
Raising Awareness of Palm Oil
Members of the YIS programme also participated in the Sustainable Consumption Festival, initiated by Earth Hour Tangerang (Jakarta), on 19 December 2018. Many activities focused on the #BeliYangBaik (#BuyGood) campaign messages of WWF-Indonesia, which encourage consumers to choose more sustainable and responsibly produced goods under practical sub-brands such as ‘buy local’, ‘buy durable’ and ‘buy ecolabel.’
The festival also included a green lifestyle workshop, a responsible makeup challenge and a green bazaar. As most young people are unaware of the importance of palm oil in their lives, YIS members shared an interactive quiz (www.rspo.org/quiz) with festival attendees, highlighting the number of products we use on a daily basis that contain palm oil – a big surprise to the respondents.