067 / Teku, Banggai Regency, Southeast Sulawesi
Maryati likes to play with kids. In fact, she has just built her own small public library next to her rented room.
Teku Village, the village where she lives, is located in between the coastal and forest area. Most of its villagers are farmers and fishermen. On the beach, people still find hawksbill sea turtles, green turtles, and olive ridley sea turtles come to lay their eggs. Unfortunately, flood comes every year to the village when the wet season starts. The big river that runs pass the village will be overflooded to the village. This issue arises due to many forest areas that were being opened for plantation.
Hence, Maryati actively campaigns for the danger of waste and how to preserve the environment. Since 2010, Maryati has involved in numerous conservation program and now she is the conservation education and outreach specialist at Aliansi Konservasi Tompotika. And the Zero Waste School program from Green-Books.org is the right program to start educating children about the dangers of plastic to marine pollution and how to reduce plastic consumption on a daily basis.
Children of Teku village mainly activities are being done before or after school, where they usually help their parents selling food around the villages. When the holiday time arrives, it’s their time to go fishing or gardening. The Zero Waste School program activities are new activities for the children and they are very enthusiastic to learn from it.
She hopes that the children will start to care about the environment and becoming changemakers to share the awareness of the dangers of plastic to their own surroundings.
Maryati doesn’t need to wait too long for her dream. Some of the parents told her that they didn’t know that fish can eat trash and now they have to take care of their waste to avoid marine pollution.