Anoushka Miranda completed the Climate Champion Field Programme at the India Regional Climate Centre. Here, she tells us about her experiences.
- When it comes to Climate Change, what’s your greatest concern?
My greatest concern is the way we are responding to the challenge. Given the overwhelming amount of evidence suggesting human activities contribute to climate change, I feel that we are reacting too slowly. We have the knowledge and we can make choices but only a few people have made that choice to change.
- If you could change anything as a Climate Champion, what would it be?
The only thing I wish I could change completely is unwillingness to act. I truly believe that we all need to understand that this is our responsibility and we can prevent this impending tragedy. Some are unable to make the link and others do not have sufficient knowledge to understand how we fit into the equation. I am going to try my utmost to change that!
- What aspects of the Climate Champion Programme helped you develop as a person?
I felt that working with colleagues from different countries in the field and in learning sessions really developed me as a person. I learnt to compromise, negotiate and collaborate with people. When you reflect back, you realize you have learnt so much.
- What’s it like living and working with HSBC colleagues?
It was a great learning experience as it brings together people from different backgrounds. We learnt so much about each other’s lives, work and also cultures. It was very interesting to meet and work with so many nationalities. You do not get to do that everyday.
- What was your biggest surprise on the programme?
The biggest surprise to me was myself, and I think the others will feel the same way about themselves. This programme pushes you out of your comfort zone in a very positive manner – through field work and learning - and you discover how far you can adapt to a new environment.
- Now you are back in Sri Lanka, what are you doing to tackle climate change?
I have designed an online survey that will allow me to ascertain where HSBC staff are in terms of their perception of climate change and what they need to move forward – this will help me to design activities that build knowledge and inspiration. I will put a lot of effort into building awareness of climate change so I can help people to understand how we combat it. My long term plan includes spreading the word to our customers, establishing green loans and creating awareness of sustainable energy projects that we can partake in.
- What do you think are the essential qualities in an aspiring climate champion?
To me, there are only three qualities you need - passion, dedication and determination for the cause. When you have those three qualities, you strive to know more about climate change, believe you can make a change and work to create awareness no matter the obstacles.