In the lead up to the United Nations International Youth Day on August 12th, we will be profiling 5 of our interns and the work they have done to support youth-led development around the world.
Name: Stu Campana
Hometown: Halifax, NS
Internship Cohort: Jan – July 2011
Host City: San Fernando, La Union, Philippines
Stu Campana’s internship was focused on waste management in San Fernando. He jokes that “engaging youth on the issue of septage and sewage is… not as easy as one would think.” And incorporating youth into the relevant decision-making activities is even more challenging. In San Fernando, Stu and his colleagues tried to focus instead on the capabilities and resources to affect positive change that local youth already possess.
Among the projects that Stu is proud to have implemented, an asset-mapping exercise with a group of 80 students stands out. The students enthusiastically engaged with the task of re-imagining their community, transforming a neighbourhood politician into a resource for sanitation solutions and a church into a springboard for dialogue about sustainability, rather than just constants of the landscape. It is impossible not to be optimistic about the future of San Fernando’s sustainable initiatives after experiencing the enthusiasm and creativity of the city’s youth first-hand.
What’s Next: Stu will return to Canada in August and begin looking for work in the field of sustainable development.
Stu has a great blog – “Environmental Mismanagement” – definitely worth a read!