Hello again from Team GrIStuF,
In this time of change and uncertainty some of our participants are all busy working on creating better possibilities for our future and trying to make a change in the world. The following essays are the first part in our COVID-19 related series. Happy reading, we hope you enjoy this input and can take away something!
In times of crisis
First of all, I had chosen Education as my favourite topic when I was applying for this festival, because education is something that I have a very big interest in. I´m especially interested in the role education plays in the development of any country and why my country (Guinea) for example has a weak evolution specially. However, in this time of crisis caused by the Corona virus, I realized the importance of solidarity between all the different countries of the world in general, and their inhabitants in particular. In my opinion, to fight this pandemic, which has shut down everything in today's world, all the countries should act as only one country in terms of contributing on how to find an effective solution for the end of this disaster and the relevance of the world economy. In addition, we should know that being in solidarity to face this disease has become like an obligation for us due to the fact that until it ends in all the countries no one can celebrate the end of this pandemic at all, because it can move very easily and quickly from one place to another like we all know, that today´s world is like one village in a big world. The speech, the president of France, Macron, gave also made a huge impact on me. In this speech he mentioned, that '' Corona virus doesn´t have a nationality''.
Another example of solidarity that I have witnessed and would like to share with you, is that as an international student living here in Turkey, so many people and the university administration have been supporting us by giving us money, food as well as moral assistance, so we are very thankful to them. They have been really kind to us since the beginning of this health problem. All those actions, again, reminded me of how important it is to realize the huge importance of solidarity between the people and their respective countries.
by Elhadj Mamoudou Sow
My journey during the COVID-19 pandemic
As an individual, I personally engaged in an awareness campaign that started on my social network. I started posting more info in my social-media statuses. I also encouraged others to spread awareness for campaigns, because I fully know that in the community I come from, some people don't believe that there is a global pandemic happening. By knowing that the lockdown in Nigeria will affect the masses, I created the "National Volunteer Group" together with friends. This is a group that is responsible for distributing palliative and awareness campaigns.
In an attempt to tackle the problems arising from the Covid-19 situation globally, we wanted to get people from other countries involved and successfully launched an "International Volunteer Group" which involves people from about 12 countries.
In addition to this, we meet from time to time online to discuss the Covid-19 issues and share ideas with each other. Recently we launched a campaign to gather funds in order to help people in need more efficiently. We also work with small community organizations to disseminate information at lower levels.
by Kamal Abdullahi Tasiu
How to find a way out
My Quarantine Story
Hello! I’m Michael and I want to share my “2020 quarantine” story with all of the GrIStuF mates!
Even though we had to stay at our homes this year, I am grateful to the team that created such a wonderful place where we can share our thoughts. Because we can´t see each other in person right now we still have the opportunity to speak and inspire each other throughout the web. So here is my contribution for the online exchange. First thing I’d like to share is: It doesn’t matter where you are or what obstacles you are facing, if your ideas and mindset are right, and you truly believe in something — you’ll find a way to benefit from every situation! We all have our inner desires and dreams, but at the same moment, external circumstances could both accompany and impede them. The circumstances are never your choice, but what you need to do and how you´ll react to these circumstances is all in your own power. As for me, I couldn’t just agree to stay at home and do nothing, blaming others for what happened. Even when you are in a hard situation, try to find a way out and change this current situation into a good one for you. There is always a positive side to every situation!
Now you might ask: How can I do that when so much has changed recently? I decided to not waste my spare time crying over current events and started to fulfil my inner desire of sharing what I know. A great way to connect with others is through social media. That´s is why I created educational channels, where I can help others with my knowledge.
I did know nothing about content creating, but learnt so much in the process of creating. Despite the fact that I’ve had tons of homework, I started to learn how to make videos with all the proper techniques like good lighting, nice sound, and how to promote my content. Still all of that is a lot of work but it all helped me to realize something.
I didn’t know beforehand, that it takes so much time to do something so small (a few days for a 10-minute long video). However — even the "small" things could do big changes! Because for me creating something from a scratch, starting from the idea inside you — is something incredible. And, if you find out how to express it in a proper way, that others may take away something useful for them as well. It is a whole new world and a great feeling of happiness! The realization that what I am doing is important for someone just makes me really happy and I really appreciate the extra experience!
It is important to be thankful for what you have. Be forgiving to the others. Because the way to perfection is a very bumpy road! If you want to do something — just start. Step by step and stay true to yourself. Be yourselves, because who else can we be?
by Mykhailo Kamai
Let's Be Kind to The Environment
COVID-19, a mighty gesture of nature
We were living in a world where a lot of people weren`t too concerned about the well-being of others. We forgot that we exist to support each other in this universe. We often ignore the trees, forests, oceans, and rivers which we need for our survival. Consequently, we cut down trees, clear forests, and construct high-rise buildings on the one hand, likewise drying out rivers or building factories that destroy the climate. Deforestation and the displacement of wild animals and birds, air contamination caused by toxic waste is not a positive indication.
Moreover, we have consistently created a reduction in aquatic life through the dumping of plastic waste into water. Eventually, this COVID-19 epidemic showed us how unrighteous we were with nature until then. While destiny has locked us in our bedrooms, nature is thriving again, various species of colourful birds are flying in the sky. Thus, hundreds of dolphins are playing at the world's longest beach, Cox's Bazar Beach in Bangladesh, they are also seen swimming in Istanbul's Bosporus, and millions of rare species of Olive Ridleys turtles are laying eggs on the beach in Odisha, India.
Nature played its own game by making us the victims of an appalling situation and imprisoned us at our own houses. Thereby, the bright blue sky is seen from the window with no toxic smoke in the atmosphere again. When the pandemic is over, let's be more kind to each other and especially respectful to the environment and learn to live with the environment coherently.
Sources: Anadolu Agency, Somoynews.tv, AFP
by Abdullah Al Mamun