Mon | Mar 4, 2024

Esirom Foundation leads charge in environmental protection

Published:Saturday | December 2, 2023 | 12:08 AMShanel Lemmie/Staff Reporter - -
Esirom Foundation members and volunteers pose atop their Pontoon, a waste collection device they created to aid in their efforts.
Esirom Foundation members and volunteers pose atop their Pontoon, a waste collection device they created to aid in their efforts.
Esirom Foundation members and volunteers hard at work for one of their projects under the Kingston Harbour Eco Restoration Initiative (KHERI).
Esirom Foundation members and volunteers hard at work for one of their projects under the Kingston Harbour Eco Restoration Initiative (KHERI).
Esirom director Alex Morissey (left) and Esirom Foundation sustainability manager Khalia Hall are keen on their mission of environmental activism.
Esirom director Alex Morissey (left) and Esirom Foundation sustainability manager Khalia Hall are keen on their mission of environmental activism.
1
2
3

Answering the call for more active participation in the fight against climate change, the Esirom Foundation is making waves in environmental protection, sustainable consumption, and urban planning.

Founded in December 2022, the foundation, which is the charitable arm of Esirom, the marketing house led by Alex Morrissey, has aimed to continue the small-scale environmental outreach that had long been a part of their mandate.

Explaining how the foundation began, Sustainability Manager Khalia Hall told Good Heart, “The director of the company, he is very passionate about all things environment-related, and so was I before I started working at Esirom. We kind of both partnered up on this mission because climate change is a pressing issue. It’s a term we feel flies over people’s heads sometimes because it’s nothing new. You hear about it in the news, it sounds so dire but you wake up the next morning and, from the looks of it, and from your day-to-day life, it seems as if things aren’t changing. It’s a bias we have as humans that, if something isn’t eminent, in terms of causing danger to us, we don’t act. Earth is our one home and, without it, nothing else really matters. And Jamaica, as a small island developing state or a Caribbean island, we are going to be one of the first countries to feel climate effects.”

Though crowned Miss Jamaica World 2021, Hall has always been passionate about protecting our global home.

“Prior to Miss Jamaica, I had a plant-based food business and the motivation behind that was actually climate change. So I changed my diet and felt this urge to come back to Jamaica and influence the way Jamaicans eat, because animal agriculture is a huge contributor t0 carbon emissions.”

She continued, “I was already passionate about that. So this came from a simple endorsement video and it transformed into what is now the Esirom Foundation.”

Now, with Morrissey at the helm, alongside Hall, the sustainability coordinator, Samantha Channel, and their volunteers in Rockfort, St Andrew, led by Densek Edwards, affectionately known as Trevor, the foundation is actively implementing multiple projects to both protect and rebuild our largest shared habitat.

Drawing inspiration from the creative marketing arm of the parent company, the Esirom team is equally enthusiastic about extending their outreach through online channels.

“We always try to capture something, Hall explained. “The reason we push content so much is really for education purposes. So it’s a really important pillar in our work. We have three main areas, environmental protection, sustainable consumption and urban planning, but, at the core of them all is public awareness and education. It’s intertwined into everything because, if people don’t know, how will they change? If people don’t know about possibilities, you know, how can they come up with new ideas and be inspired?”

She continued, “Our mission statement, I would say, is addressing environmental issues comprehensively to ensure that we create solution-driven impact while generating opportunities around sustainable development in Jamaica. All in all, we are addressing a global problem but we’re taking local action because Jamaica is our home.”

With less than a year under their belt, she mentions that, next year, they will not only persist in their palliative work such as beach clean-ups and wellness initiatives, but will also delve deeper into urban planning and sustainable consumption. Initiatives like their ‘Bring Yuh Owna Tings’ campaign, the ‘Grow Your Own Food’ campaign, and a composting project will be focal points of their efforts.

“Generally, not speaking on projects next year, we plan on having more direct impact on people and working directly with people. We’ve been working a lot behind the scenes and, even with our clean-ups, it’s our very small team but we want to include the public in our projects as well as interact directly with Jamaicans to make our impact felt stronger,” she said.

Though the Esirom Foundation can be best reached through a direct message to their Instagram account @esiromfoundation, interested parties can sign up through the volunteer link on their website at esiromfoundation.org.

shanel.lemmie@gleanerjm.com