April Social Media Challenge: #EarthDayChallenge

Did you know that about one billion people take part in Earth Day activities around the world every year? No matter where we live, the Earth is something we all have in common. During the month of April, we launched a social media challenge asking Global UGRADs to share what the environment means to them and what they are doing to take care of our Earth.

The response was inspiring! The participants’ knowledge of sustainability and dedication to their local communities shown through in all of their posts. The following are just a few of the wonderful examples of what Global UGRADs are doing around the world to protect our Earth and live more sustainably.

Ana using anaerobic digestion to produce energy and fertilizer

“As an agronomic engineer to be, I am really concerned about waste management caused by food production in general.

Meat production is one of the main causes of global warming, as well as soil deterioration. That’s why one of our professors encouraged us to give anaerobic digestion a try.

Here’s a picture of me filling in our digester with cattle waste. It only took a few weeks until it started producing biogas to cook and biomass to fertilize! Now more than ever, investigation is key to find new solutions to our global environmental problems!”

– Ana Zelaya, El Salvador


Honey planting trees in her community

“We are all aware of apples, oranges and the countless other fruits and nuts provided by trees.

Trees are an important part of every community. I live in a small town in Indonesia with lots of trees around and live with their benefit. Trees have supported and sustained life throughout our existence. That’s why, for me, it’s very important to plant trees.

Trees also give me a lesson of life:

Be like a tree. Stay grounded, connect with your roots, turn over a new leaf.”

– Honey Yahdillah, Indonesia


“The wastes from the products we consume, one way or another, make their way into the sea affecting our environment and marine life.

Rosanna at a beach clean-up

Seeing for myself the impact it causes and the amount of waste that ends up at the seaside has made me realize through the years how crucial it is to reduce and recycle plastics and trash.

Being concerned about the urgency to change our lifestyle has encouraged me to volunteer, protect, and preserve our environment. Moreover, my work as an environmental activist is one of my favorite activities. In addition to inspiring me to be self-aware of climate change and the necessity of reducing our negative impact on the earth, it is most important to me that I raise awareness and inspire others around me.

‘It is our collective and individual responsibility… to preserve and tend to the world in which we all live’ – Dalai Lama.”

– Rosanna Taveras, Dominican Republic


Catya’s grandfather in his garden

“In the first photo, you can see my grandfather. He worked for years as a gardener. In the other photo, you can see a small green space that we have at home. What’s so special about it? In this small green space, we have a plant called “Heliconia”. Heliconias are important as protectors of water sources and essential in reforestation. In El Salvador, the summer season heat is intense, and the water in my community is sometimes scarce.

With this Heliconia plant and its incredible help in water retention, it allows the soil around it to maintain moisture by keeping the rest of the plants alive and generating freshness at home.

And not only that, thanks to shared substances, we were able to grow foods like bananas. Heliconias are of great benefit. Currently in the country there is a forest only of these plants which supply water to an entire community. We protect our environment by not letting our plants die.”

-Catya Alvarado, El Salvador