Change Leaders Inspiring Me Event in Hamburg

Reading Time: 14 minutes

Climate reality presentation | The body and mind system | Steps for children | Being your true selfMany children – One world | Happiness and sustainability | The future of algae


The Climate Reality Slide Show

The C.L.I.Me event was opened by Eva Keretic herself. She shared a little story about her own training to become a Climate Reality Leader in Pittsburg in 2017 and how impressed and inspired she was by Al Gore.

Every climate leader trainee agrees to share the word about how climate change is happening and how we need to act now. These continuous efforts to share the message are the best way to reach more and more people and hopefully open their eyes.

One way to do this is to give a slide show presentation which covers the pressing facts and truths about Climate Change being a reality. To open the Change Leaders Inspiring Me event Eva held such a presentation. During which she covered many topics that I too care about:

Eva Keretic during her presentation: too much plastic.
A scary truth: “Humans produce 20,000 plastic bottle every second.” And now think about the consequences when these end up in landfills or nature…
  • Like, how we use too much plastic.
  • How we throw away too much food: 30-40% of the processed food is thrown away. It’s not only sad because there are still people starving every day, but also because the whole ‘creation’ of that food source, whether it is agricultural produce like meat, dairy or vegetables, or factory processed food, it all was brought about by damaging our environment through C02 emissions.
We have to remember:

“Food does not appear by magic! It needs work and resources to be created/grown + harvested + processed + stored + shipped. After creating so much pollution during the process of producing it, how can we allow it to just end up in the bin? It doesn’t make any sense! “

Our current food system urgently needs to be reformed.

The body and mind system

Andrea Tap shared her knowledge about how we often ‘poison’ ourselves.

We do this by thinking negatively and hurting us and others with it. Or by judging harshly without trying to be more understanding of the other persons perspective.

But that is not all, we also ‘poison’ our bodies by undernourishing it, eating things treated with toxins or by consuming things that unbalance our body. Meaning, we usually unbalance our inner pH, making our bodies more sour. How? For example by consuming alcohol, meat, milk, sugar, coffee, and so on. There are many things we consume that have this effect.

Andrea Tap speaking about the body mind system.
“Yesterday I was clever and wanted to change the world, today I am wise and want to change myself.” (Rumi)
Awareness as a source of happiness

There is also the problem of not being aware and present. Most of us are so busy with their futures or pasts that we forget the present. I know that too well. Do you?

We alone are responsible for changing this circumstance. Only we can change our habits to become more present or aware. And it’s not easy, it actually is quite a bit of ‘work’. But it’s worth it, because in being aware and present in the moment lies the foundation to happiness. I don’t doubt this statement.

“Because the times that I remember with fond memories are the times when I stopped to be more present: When I stopped to enjoy that beautiful sunset. Or when I  took time to be with my familiy and beloved ones. Those are the memories that sticked in my mind.

Sustainable non-profit “Steps for children”

Dr. Michael Hoppe the founder of Steps for Children first gave us a quick insight in his past and why he wanted to start this non-profit. What amazed me the most was how he took the whole thing onto a new level by applying a systematic approach. He wanted to create a sustainable charity that is not only dependant on donations. (Because they fluctuate and it’s difficult to provide consistent services that way.) So he thought of  and implemented steps to create an income.

The main mission of his non-profit is to provide orphan children in Africa with an education and three meals a day. Through which he provides these children with a perspective for a better fututre.

What I like is this: Since children are our future, it makes most sense to start with looking after them and help them break out of the spiral of “no eductaion – unemployment – hopelessnes – last resort: alcohol or illeagal activities or violence”. I also found it very curious to hear that even inbetween these children differences can be found. Meaning, those who get a stipendid (the so called Guardian Angel Program) to learn English do much beter than those who don’t. Having access to the world through speaking the “world language English” and being able to use the internet is what allows them to get ahead of their peers.

Dr. Miacheal Hoppe presenting his non-profit: Steps for children.
Dr. Miacheal Hoppe sharing how people can get involved and help.
So how is the income created?

There is a chinese proverb that goes like this:

“You give a poor man a fish and you feed him for a day. You teach him to fish and you give him an occupation that will feed him for a lifetime.”

The same applies for the schooling of older children. They get to learn a trade. With this basic knowledge they can choose to go look for work or if there are job openings, stay and work for Steps for Children. By doing this and by employing locals to teach and look after the children they created 50 job openenings. No t bad for a non-profit!

Steps for Children’s earnings mainly come from the renting of accommodation that they have build, or from selling clothing and other creative souvenirs that they made for tourists.

In the future there is the plan to grow vegetables themselves and raise their own stock. This will provide more food for even more children and create an income which helps close the circle. Altogether, Steps for Children sounds like the most self-sustainable charity that I have ever heard of.

Being Your True Self – Native American Insights

Axel Neo Palzer tried to convey a very deep topic in a very short time. This is not easy to do or to summarize, but I will try 😉

He openend sharing one of his own early childhood memories, where he with his childish perspective of the world was content laying in a meadow for hours. Just watching the grass move, the wonder of nature happening around him and being present…

But of course this was not okay with the outside world, where everyone is in a hurry and where people don’t take time to just be anymore. With this memory he deep dives into the psychology of humans. How he, to please his parents, tried to adjust and change his ways. It didn’t make him happy to put this mask on, but it seemed to please his parents.

From an early childhood on, we thus get trained to put on masks and hide the person we really are. To please others and fit into the system. But can we be happy, that is truly happy by being a fake self? It is kind of shallow, isn’t it?

We need to drop our masks and stop pretending

When meeting on old native american, he learned that these people from the old days are different. They will not accept or even meet you, if you come wearing a  mask. From the first step onto their land, you will be watched. And only if you are truely yourself you are really allowed into the circle.

Alex Neo Palzer about insight from native americans.
There is a lot we can learn from old Native Americans who have a very different cultural perspective from us.

Axel speaks about how the native americans used to send their youth into the woods or mountains. There they had to survive by themselves, but also had time to think about their future and what they want to do with their lifes. This example reminds me vividly of my own 19-year old self. I had no dream what I wanted to be and no idea what to do with my life. My education at school had not inspired me to take on a certain carreer. Yet I was expected to know what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. A problem I am sure that I shared with many other people at that age.

Start to listen to people again

Besides stopping to pretend, there is also a need to learn to listen again. How often do we listen while hoping for the other to stop so that we can say our own opinion? Being thus occupied with what we want to say, we don’t really hear what the other is saying anymore. By doing that we end up missing half the conversation, miss out on the persons character and a better understanding of it. And we also miss the chance to make a deeper connection. We need to get back to that, to be more emphatic and to try to really understand the other person. Starring at your smartphone while listening simply doesn’t do that trick.

The same rule applies for ourselves

We need to listen to our inside – what we really want, who we really are. Ask ourselves, what things are hindering me from being myself? What can I do about them and fight them? Introspection is a key to find your real self. And once you are your real self and live an authentic life, suddenly you will feel much happier and more satisfied with life. And don’t we all want to be happy? Isn’t that our main thriving force – to be happy?

Let’s stop pretending and find our real selves! (You can find Axel’s free training series here.)

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