GINKalimantan Conference 2016: Youths Dig Environmental Issues

Global Issues Networking Bali will hop over to another part of Indonesia for this year's meet up. Lots are in store for youths participating in the Kalimantan conference from 16-18 September 2016, which will centre largely on social and environmental issues. 

By Kayti Denham

Bali, 13 June 2016. This September, following on the success of three years of Bali-based youth conferences, Global Issues Networking Bali, or GINBali, is heading for a different destination - Kalimantan.

GINKalimantan is part of the global issues network (GIN) that delivers youth conferences on world issues with many discussions and workshops that try to raise awareness and create initiatives as well as solutions for local and international communities.

Students also get a chance to engage in issues such as climate change, biodiversity threats, human rights abuse and discuss application of global initiatives such as the 17 Sustainable Development Goals to be implemented by 2030. The goals include equal access to energy, water, education and economic resources, gender equality, fighting against climate change and achieving a low-carbon economy.

The shark finning industry has its tentacles all over big companies and small dudes in Asia. Picture: Shawn Heinrichs

The shark finning industry has its tentacles all over big companies and small dudes in Asia. Picture: Shawn Heinrichs

The main aim of GIN conferences is to steer students towards recognising how their passion can become a power for change.

Students from Asia including Australia, Vietnam, India and Indonesia will convene to share, show, discuss and develop ideas. Youth leaders who are subject experts will be at hand to guide them with the shaping of ideas and plans into achievable actions and relevant goals that can be applied to local, regional and global problems.

Borneo Nature Foundation, who have been a regional GIN partner for two years, will once again host the conference from 16 to 18 September 2016.

Racing to Prevent Extinction

The work of Borneo Nature Foundation in Kalimantan extends to animal protection, data collection and environment preservation. This makes them an ideal partner for the conference, offering students the opportunity to see first hand how some of the global issues are tackled daily by dedicated individuals.

Furthermore this year the keynote speech is on the environment. The school is located close to the forest where students will have a chance to explore nature and learn more about ecology on a guided excursion.

The film ‘Racing Extinction’ with English soundtrack and Indonesian subtitles will be shown to get participants focused on the goals of the conference. The producers of this film have gifted us this screening and key members of the film will be present to tackle questions from the youths.

When too many whale sharks are fished out, the ocean ecosystem suffers. Racing Extinction highlights just how real and serious the onward extinction is to a number of species if we do not step forward to make a change. Photo: Shawn Heinrichs

The focus on students as workshop co-leaders is a big part of GIN.This year, the leaders hail from many student initiatives including Bali-based Bye Bye Plastic Bags and Kids Cut Palm Oil. They will be sharing with the students on their personal and career journeys - from their formation of an idea to the meetings with international leaders and change makers.

The beautiful Dayak culture will feature in all the workshops that include topics of human rights, food soverignty and educational access for all. Each workshop uses a creative medium in which students can express themselves through a variety of song, painting, creative writing, photography, film making and movement.

Current data on the value of student led learning has shown that an increase in motivation and retention of information occurs, sometimes up to a 30% improvement on teacher to student delivery*. With dynamic conferences like GIN occurring globally, young students of today have the opportunity to not just become aware but also become responsible custodians of their own futures.

Each month up until the conference, GINKalimantan will be sharing features with Gaia Discovery on some of the achievements and initiatives of this dynamic group of youth leaders.

Wish to make a change? Send some money to to help fund a youth or two to attend the GINKalimantan conference

Wish to make a change? Send some money to to help fund a youth or two to attend the GINKalimantan conference

GINKalimantan is hosted by Borneo Nature Foundation and Bina Cita Utama School from 16-18 September 2016.

Taking global education to the heart of the matter - three days of dynamic interactive experiences.

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Help fund Balinese students attend the conference and participate in the regional dialogue for change.

*Supplemental Instruction

Photos courtesy of SHAWN HEINRICHS, who was involved in the cinematography of Racing Extinction.