The children in Year 5 at British International School, Phuket have been learning about how fragile our earth has become due to human influence.

More recently, they researched the effect of palm oil plantations on rainforest environments. During their research the students discovered a website called ‘Kids against Palm oil’.

Many of them contacted the website, voicing their concerns about this issue where tens of thousands of orangutans and other native animals have lost their lives and habitats due to the rapid development of unsustainable palm oil plantations.

The children were very lucky to get a response from the founder of the website, 18 year old Jordan Salama, who offered to hold a Skype conference with them.

During the recent Skype conference, Jordan, who lives in New York, began by telling the children about his experiences when researching about palm oil. After he completed a project about it in Grade 6, he decided to start a website and educate others.

During this week’s conference, there was an engaging questions and answer session where Jordan recounted his experiences of removing unsustainable palm oil products from his school, the success of his website including television appearances across the United States, and why he is so passionate about fighting for this cause.

He also talked about ‘obstacles’ and how even when something doesn’t quite go right the first time, we mustn’t give up on doing something we believe in.

This was a great message for the children and great advice from the final year American high school student. The children really connected with him and he quickly became a role model for 63 young minds.

The Year 5 children will now combine these strong messages with their follow up work based on environmental sustainability, endangered species and ‘making a difference’ in our society.

For more information, contact Rebecca Krijewski: [email protected]bisphuket.ac.th