No ordinary 21st birthday
While many will hope for fabulous gifts on their 21st birthday bash, Amelia Tendler decided to go down a different path and raise money for Earthwatch Australia in lieu of gifts. With friends and family getting behind this fantastic idea, Amelia was able to single-handedly raise over $2,800 for a cause she is passionate about, Earthwatch.
Graduating from Melbourne University last year with a Bachelor of Environment and currently, undertaking Honours in Social Geography, Amelia is very passionate about making a difference in the environmental field and fighting for its cause. An ambitious student, Amelia is working on a project that focuses on the drivers and barriers to green roofs among building professionals of commercial buildings in Australia.
Amelia took the time to talk a little bit about herself and her aspiration as well as what motivated her to donate to Earthwatch on her 21st birthday.
Earthwatch (EW): Amelia, you decided to donate money to Earthwatch during your 21st birthday instead of receiving presents - a really fantastic gesture, what made you decide to do this?
Amelia Tendler (AT): I often feel that our society places too much emphasis on material possessions and I’ve had plenty of birthdays where I’ve received things I didn’t need. At the time of my 21st birthday, there was nothing I felt I needed so rather than my friends and family spending lots of money and resources on buying unnecessary gifts, I wanted to contribute something more positive and worthwhile to a good cause. This is something I believe in. I would certainly encourage others to do the same. It’s a great feeling to know that you are contributing to something meaningful. My friends and family also thought it was a great idea to contribute to a meaningful and worthwhile cause for my birthday.
EW: How did you hear about Earthwatch and what interests you this most about the organisation?
AT: I’d heard about Earthwatch through a number of different outlets, but primarily through my interest in the environment and through some of the great work Earthwatch has done over the years. I am particularly interested in Earthwatch because of its mission statement, which emphasises the importance of education in promoting the necessary understanding and action for a sustainable world. This emphasis on education really resonates with me, as I am a firm believer in the importance of education as a tool for overcoming ignorance and misinformation. By learning and gaining knowledge we are better equipped to improve our understanding of the world around us and positively contribute to society. Earthwatch also appealed to me because of its non-political affiliation.
EW: If you were to go on an Earthwatch expedition, which one would you be most interested in?
AT: While I would be thrilled to go on any Earthwatch expedition and explore the incredible environments and landscapes around the world, if I had to choose one for now, I would probably be most interested in going on the Easter Island (Rapa Nui) Cultural Heritage expedition as I am fascinated by history and ancient civilisations and I believe a lot can be learnt from the past.
EW: What are some of your future goals?
AT: While I don’t know what my future holds, I have a strong passion and drive to make a difference in the world and it is my goal to positively contribute as much as I can to improving the society we live in and reconciling the relationship between humankind and the natural environment.
Earthwatch Australia would like to thank Amelia Tendler for her wonderful contribution and wish her the best of luck in her future endeavours.