Storyteller: Dohee Christy Lee from Samsung Engineering
Although I have many friends working in the United Arab Emirates, I had never been there, and the images I had of the country didn’t go far beyond the forest of skyscrapers and vast desert often shown in movies. Thus I was both excited and nervous at the time to visit elementary schools in the UAE last month as part of our “Eco-generation School” campaign.
The initial worries were blown away immediately by a warm breeze once I arrived at the Abu Dhabi International Airport. I felt welcomed by the warm and comforting weather – compared to the cold and dry winter weather of Korea – and couldn’t be more excited about teaching the students in the UAE about renewable energy and the eco-friendly lifestyle for a sustainable world.
We visited the GEMS Cambridge International School and the Al Ittihad National Private School both located in Abu Dhabi, the UAE capital. Along with our colleagues from Samsung Engineering UAE, who volunteered for the program, we interacted with the students in various activities including assembling the solar-powered eco-house kit. The children participated with such great enthusiasm!
Personally, I was curious about how the children of such an oil-rich country as the UAE would respond to classes related to new and renewable energy. To my surprise, the students of both schools were very keen to learn about renewable energy.
After taking part in five sessions at the two schools back-to-back, I was so exhausted. But watching the teachers happy for their students and the kids running across the playground holding the solar-powered eco-house with a spinning fan on it, I thought I was awarded with the most valuable gift of the year.
In the UAE, there were many tall buildings which rise above the clouds and luxurious cars that shine under the burning sun. For me, the tallest and shiniest of all in the UAE that day were the teachers and the bright, happy children at those two schools.
Last but not least I would like to give a big thumbs-up to our colleagues at Samsung Engineering UAE, who helped toward bringing the dream of an eco-friendly world to the youth of UAE. I am sure our small efforts were indeed a big contribution to building a better future.