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Encouraging Environmentally Responsible Practices in Southeast Asia

Anyone who has traveled to Asia can easily recall the image of countless plastic bags found collecting on the sides of highways, clogging drainage systems, filling rivers and cluttering neighborhoods.  

Recognizing this serious hazard, Ranitya Nurlita founded the ASEAN Reusable Bag Campaign to reduce the use of disposable plastic bags and exchange their use with reusable bags.

IRI is providing seed grants and technical support to young Southeast Asian leaders like Ranitya Nurlita who are using innovative campaigns to lead positive social change movements in their communities throughout ASEAN countries.  Funding is from the U.S. State Department’s Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI).  ASEAN Reusable Bag Campaign’s project will raise awareness about the negative environmental consequences of plastic bag use and encourage consumers to carry reusable bags when they shop.  Through activities at schools and universities, as well as a reusable bag design competition, the project will engage youth in the movement to eliminate excessive plastic bag use in ASEAN countries.  Partnering with local universities, ministries of environment, U.S. Embassies, civil society and the media, ASEAN Reusable Bag Campaign is engaging a variety of supporters to ensure their project succeeds.



IRI is proud to be working with young Southeast Asian leaders like ASEAN Reusable Bag Campaign and providing mentorship and management assistance to YSEALI grant winners, including through interactive Virtual Teleconferences and Google Hangouts, to build leadership abilities, increase program sustainability and enhance project management skills.  YSEALI project teams will become part of IRI’s Generation Democracy (GenDem) network, which is an emerging forum that engages, empowers and connects youth around the world to share their experiences and ideas promoting positive social and political change.

Posted by

Rebecca Buursma

Assistant Program Officer, Asia Division