Silke Lueg

SilkeTime flies, it has been two months ago that I finished my internship at Ecoknights. After finishing my master’s degree in environmental science in Antwerp (Belgium), I wanted to see more of the world together with my partner before we would start working in Belgium. In the meantime, we wanted to do something useful, so we started looking for an internship in Kuala Lumpur.  I ended up doing a three-month internship at Ecoknights.

I have to admit that I had a little culture shock in the first weeks that I was in Malaysia and at Ecoknights. The working methods are different and also the state of the environment in Malaysia is sometimes quite depressing. For me, one of the most interesting aspects of my internship at Ecoknights were the river clean-ups. During this activity you really see, feel and smell the problem of trash in rivers! If you read this and haven’t joined one, don’t hesitate and volunteer at the next clean-up! Now I am participating in the May Plastic Free month in Belgium because I really want to reduce my use of plastics. A Greenpeace report from the first half of 2018 revealed that Belgium is one of the top countries that send plastic waste to Malaysia. I don’t want to be part of that anymore. The clean-up was an eye-opener that I will never forget.

After a week of orientation at Ecoknights, they assigned me under the educational pillar with Nabila as responsible staff. I was really impressed by her motivation and it was always pleasant to work with her. She gave me the opportunity to learn a lot about composting and the importance of it. I also could try it out for myself at the office. Besides that, I organised some Zero Waste Workshops and was assigned to make manuals for the different workshops. During the three months, I also got the opportunity to help with the preparations for the KLEFF film festival, learnt how to plant peanuts during the ASEAN project, learnt how to make posters for events and much more.

During my three months of internship, I witnessed the organization growing with more interns and projects. The staff and interns are really nice and open people. During lunch, we would go out and eat together or cook in the office. I am happy that I could start the ‘Meatless Monday’ with mixed enthusiasm in the office, but after a while everyone was positive. I hope that they are still doing it and can convince others to follow them!

Sometimes there was a lot to do, sometimes not, but overall it was an interesting experience where I met a lot of wonderful people. Thank you for giving me this opportunity. 

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