Eco Network is a “Climate School” project to educate more than 50,000 children and youths about the environment. Nearly 10,000 people have signed up to be part of this team as climate ambassadors, and they are utilizing the media to increase awareness of environmental issues and climate change. Recently in an interview, Mr. Shamim Ahmed Mridha, Founder of Eco Network described their organization, how he came up with the idea of the organization, its impacts, achievements, and future plans.
You were just honored by the 2022 Diana Awards. Tell us how you are feeling now that you have received this prestigious award.
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: I am incredibly glad to receive the most prestigious “The Diana Award” and I believe that this recognition will encourage my team members to work more for nature and the environment. “The Diana Award” is one of the biggest recognitions for young people who are working for society. I am really proud to receive this and I think the recognition of this award will be a great inspiration to the members of our organization.
Your organization is titled “Eco Network”; tell us about that.
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: “Eco Network” started its journey in 2018 and one of our main goals is to create awareness among the people about the environment and climate change. Our work is mainly conducted by university students who are studying environmental science or are interested in working with the environment. Although the journey started with the students of Bangladesh University of Professionals, we have been able to bring together the students of about 35 universities in Bangladesh and they are conducting various public awareness campaigns and workshops in different primary schools in their respective areas.
As you are the founder of the organization, how did the concept for this organization come to you?
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: We all know that Bangladesh is a risky country and we are constantly facing all kinds of natural and man-made disasters. Soil pollution, water pollution, air pollution and various types of pollution are further accelerating this process. I built this organization out of a sense of responsibility to society and since I studied in the Department of Environmental Sciences, I have always been committed to creating awareness among people about the risks of climate change.
We are all aware of the several organizations working on these climate and environmental challenges in our country these days. then describe how your company is unique from them.
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: Apart from Bangladesh, we are working on climate awareness in 23 more countries including Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and India. Since its inception, we have been able to connect around 4 to 5 lakh young people with our work through our online and offline activities. We have several Coleman projects, one of which is the “Climate School” project, which raises awareness about the environment. In addition, we have a project called “Mission Green Bangladesh”, one of the goals of which is to plant about 50,000 trees by 2030.
Tell us about some of your other achievements and the influence this organization has had on society.
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: Since its inception, we have been able to organize a number of impactful events, including the “Global Climate Summit”, which is held in September each year with the participation of climate leaders from different countries. In addition, we are currently working with various national and international NGOs, including the Bangladesh Department of Environment. We are mainly conducting various activities with our funds / donations and in addition we are currently working in partnership with a number of NGOs. They are giving us some financial support.
Would you mind sharing with us your future plans with this organization?
Shamim Ahmed Mridha: Eco Network wants to take part in several more development projects in the next 5 years, through which it will be possible to address the risks of climate change in Bangladesh.