Out to make a difference

Anastasha Savura took part at the 'Our Oceans Conference Centre' in Washington DC, USA. Picture: SUPPLIED

AT a time when most young people are taken up with the latest fashion trends, music or the latest gadgets, young activists such as Anastasha Savura are out to make a difference.

While growing up she went through her share of challenges and unfair trials.

“When you realise how much wiser, failure has made you, only then can you fully appreciate your success,” she described.

The 23-year-old marine science graduate from the University of the South Pacific was supported by Bayly Welfare Centre growing up. Today, she is employed as a marine scientist at a five star resort.

“Like many of us who come to the Bayly Welfare Centre, my life was a series of fetching the pail of water up the hill. Some hills were really steep and some just a fun hike.

“However, it is these climbs through life that made me stronger and motivated to finish my university studies,” she said.

“My mum had always and continues to tell me to follow my dreams and I still believe that is the best advice anyone has ever given me to date.

“Education is important. Education is a need. It is the core foundation for a future.

“However, education should not be moulded to that of society’s conceptions of what it should be.

“Our little gadgets and false information have over the years, negatively conceptualised imagination as a child’s growth factor rather than using the same concept as a means to educate innovation.”

Her hard work and dedication has allowed Anastasha to travel to French Polynesia where she has made scientific discoveries in the field of marine biology.

Some of her achievements include being chosen by the US Department of State and Foreign Affairs to travel to the US and meet the presidents of many countries including President Obama and Secretary of State, Senator John Kerry and most recently, attended the COP23 Climate Conference led by Fiji at Bonn, Germany.

“As a Pacific Islander, the ocean is our identity. The ocean gave birth to our islands and has protected us from enemies and provided us with life,” she shared.

“It is engraved in our culture, tradition and has evolved to be an integral part of our economy through tourism. Our ocean is under threat from overfishing, coral reef bleaching, a rise in global temperature and human impacts such as pollution as well as reef destruction from the intense and frequent cyclones due to climate change.

“I find it is my responsibility as a youth to advocate climate justice and understand how the global community is affected by global temperature rise, build a global youth network and collaborate, innovative ideas/dialogue in the hope of protecting all our species and planet earth.”

Anastasha says she will not rest on her laurels as yet.

Apart from her work she collaborated with representatives from 23 Pacific Island countries to form a Pacific Youth Leadership framework.

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