• Oceans4Life

Influence and the Role of Social Media

This week Oceans4life had the pleasure to visit The American School of Las Palmas, to share our story and to see for ourselves what the school has been up to concerning all things ‘Eco’. The school has just been awarded a Green Flag for their efforts towards sustainability, an award which has not been easy to achieve. Furthermore the Year 9 and 11 science class have implemented many biodiversity projects around the school, including a vegetable garden and the growing of local plants to attract and support local insects and wildlife.

To be honest, preparing for this presentation was a bit daunting as I already knew that the students had a very good understanding of sustainability, biodiversity and marine conservation. I also learnt that they are taking their knowledge out into the wider community to advocate sustainability (they had a stall at the Ecological Fair in Arucas, and were apart of an eco float during Carnaval). So one thing I knew for certain was that these young people are now leaders in the community, but I wondered if they knew it?

So with that, I decided INFLUENCE would be a great topic to talk with them about.

Everybody has a large circle of influence, wether you realise it or not. The students at The American School have influence on their peers, the school community as a whole, their family, the wider community and this influence is even extended to social media. The perfect example here is the story of Oceans4life! A grassroots movement that gathered momentum because the audience is LARGE and the intention is GOOD. The spread of a good idea is as rapid as a click of a ‘like’ or a couple of words to comment. Social movements can easily and quickly become global because of the digital world. These students have access to this daily… imagine their influence on this platform. For me, this is a very exciting idea!

Think of small steps. Small steps in the right direction make waves. But when small steps are repeatedly made in unison… they make giant waves! So when the problem seems overwhelming think small. Make small positive steps and repeat. If you share your journey with others you make more small steps and the flow on effect is profound. Social media makes it easy, but make it positive and keep a good idea going! Your influence is profound.

Walking away from the school that day I felt safe. Safe in the knowing that these young people where using their influence for the greater good. I felt inspired. Inspired by the teachers and staff who were using their influence to mould the next generation.

We have a tremendous task ahead of us, but one by one we can make a splash, and together we can make a tidal wave of positivity!

Keep up the great work Eco Warriors!

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