Greenish Festival raised awareness about climate change and offered sustainable solutions.
By Isabel Bjerrum Møller
Through talks, discussions, music performances and workshops, Greenish Festival explored sustainability in different forms, while addressing the pressing issue of climate change.
On the 3rd of September, between 2500 and 3000 people gathered at the GrEEK Campus in the heart of Cairo. They enjoyed music, talks, food and drinks. It was the perfect set-up for a fun day with your friends. The bazar offered tea, tote bags, t-shirts, candies and Jewellery. All, of course, responsibly made with the environment in mind.
At the café, Roots, you could fill up your depots with sandwiches and juices. They used straws made of reed Instead of plastic. The company, Earthly, that produces them had a stand at Greenish Festival, so when you finished your juice, the company would clean the straws and they were ready to be used again. Perfect for enjoying a cool beverage in the Cairo summer heat without the guilt of using plastic straws.
The festival was sponsored by DEDI, among others such as the Swiss and British embassies. DEDI provided music performances by Nada Sherdy (Nedz) and Zeina (Unfamiliar), graduate and teacher of DEDI’s DJ Masterclass. DEDI also organized a panel discussion about the role of youth in sustainability scene and a workshop on the newly-launched DEDI Green Checklist.
The heirs of the earth
The five arenas with panel discussions and workshops presented different ideas and solutions to the environmental challenges the world face.
“A big role of the festival is to bring solutions to the table, discuss them and make them grow.” Shadi Khalil, co-founder and general director of Greenish, says.
For Shady the youth is an especially important group in the sustainability debate.
“I think it is very good that the youth are driving this movement, because they bring more radical discussions to the table”, he says.
“They feel that they are going to be impacted more by the environmental challenges, more than anyone else, because they will have to live with it”.
Head of Civic Partnership Program at DEDI, Rana Khamis, moderated a panel discussion on “Youth Shaping the Sustainability Scene: From Aspiration to Ownership” at the main stage.
Similar to their percentage in the Egyptian society, youth between 16 and 25 years old represented the biggest group at the festival as attendees and volunteers.
“It is very important to raise awareness about sustainability, waste management and international and global affairs such as climate change among the younger generations,” Yousra Fouda, project officer at the Civic Partnership Program at DEDI, says. “Being aware means that they can play a vital role in the solutions”.
A global problem
Yousra Fouda is both proud and happy to have been part of tackling and raising awareness to this global problem.
“I am very glad that DEDI was part of this. We saw this year how several cities were affected by either wild fires or flooding. Both phenomena are direct results of global warming and climate change. It is very important to realise that this global danger is affecting all of us and that the whole world need to work together to find sustainable solutions”, Yousra Fouda says.
For Shadi Khalil, a festival like Greenish is especially important in Egypt.
“Sustainability awareness is very important in Egypt because we have a lot of environmental challenges. And we are going to face a lot of impact of the climate change”, he says.
The festival adopted a perfect balance between being a useful experience on the sustainability awareness level and being a fun day. Several musicians and DJs attracted people to the stage where important panel discussion took place in between their performances.
“It was very nice to see all these people, together in one place. We all have been struggling with the consequences of the spread of Covid-19 virus. It was nice to see people challenging the pandemic and coming together for the love of sustainability, for the love of the environment and even for the love of learning more from each other”, Yousra Fouda says.
DEDI Green Checklist
The festival also marked the launch of DEDI Green Checklist. With this checklist you have the perfect guidelines to make your next event more eco-friendly.
“This checklist is made to help environmentally conscious organizations and individuals mitigate their events’ carbon emissions and/or achieve their sustainability or carbon goals. The checklist will help its users to organize zero-waste and carbon-neutral events, as it suggests eco-friendly solutions for food, supplies, venues, transportation, giveaways, and waste management”, Yousra says.