2003 Grad - Finola
Envision literally changed the direction of my life
The team focused on campaigning to make their school ‘greener’ and more ethical by raising awareness of the ‘Reduce, Re-use, Recycle’ initiative. As a result their school set up a composting bin, reduced water and paper consumption and became the first school to stock only Fairtrade goods in the canteen.
I was selected for the Youth Envisionaries Leadership Award (YELA); a trip to South Africa for a wilderness trek and to attend the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg. The summit was absolutely incredible - meeting other young people from all over the world, sharing our experiences and what we planned to do for sustainable development. We were each paired with a young person from Soweto which was amazing, as a 16 year old it was such an inspiring experience – I felt so lucky!
Finola is working in finance for a charity that runs a language school and recently spent the Summer volunteering in Malawi.
What did you get out of Envision?
Envision changed my life in a really positive way, it harnessed my passion for the environment and gave us all the belief that we can make a difference. After Envision I won an award at School for my work to protect the environment and this went on my Personal Statement to help me secure a place to study Geography at University. After I graduated I chose to work as an auditor for several charities including Greenpeace and the World Development Movement. I’ve always volunteered which I think is something I got from Envision, I’ve volunteered at Samaritans, Envision and Friends of the Earth. If I hadn’t of taken part in Envision I wouldn’t have thought to seek out opportunities like this– it opened my eyes to working and volunteering in the charity sector.
I definitely grew in confidence through the volunteering and work I did with Envision, I developed teamwork skills and resilience but above all the feeling that no one person or action is too small to make a difference. My Envision mentors were amazing and I really valued them, they were really inspirational to me and helped me to understand that grades aren’t the only thing that matters. Envision literally changed the direction of my life and that’s why I wanted to give something back so I volunteered as a mentor and worked for them one Summer. I hope that one day every young person will have the opportunity to do Envision and to gain what I did from it because it helps people to become better citizens there is a greater need to build active and aware citizens now than ever before.