On the 22nd of September, the ASN Bank organised a new edition of their sustainability festival and I was there! I attended three lectures, had a look inside the RainBar, almost won a “pub quiz” on plastic-free living, attended a workshop on how to make your own eco-friendly deodorant, and enjoyed music by the Valvetronic Brassband.
This time around the ACT festival took place in Rotterdam, my current home town, so I was able to go there by bike and fortunately, so did a lot of people.
I went with a friend of mine, Zoë, who is also very interested in sustainability but mainly has a passion for music, no wonder she enjoyed the Valvetronic Brassband very much – as did I.
When we arrived at the festival it had only just started which meant we were able to attend everything we want to. We started by getting a drink, which was served in a reusable hard plastic cup. Off to a good start.
In total we attended three lectures. One by ‘Fair Wear’ on sustainable clothing shops. This company fights for a more ethical garment industry regarding wages and working conditions. They do not focus yet on sustainable materials but might in the future. One of the tips they gave about low emission and low waste shopping was: “Buy second hand and give old clothing a new life.”. Great advice if you ask me.
The second lecture we attended was a little confusing. It was given by Dina El Filali, she shared information about her company and her view on sustainability. By the end of the lecture, I was still a little bit confused on what message she wanted to share with us and what the company really stood for but she was very kind and got me interested in her company. I am still trying to find time to look into it and hopefully apply her methods to my own life.
The last lecture we attended was the most enjoyable one for me, and I think most people at the festival because the tent it was held at was almost overflowing with people. Zoë and I got there a little early, so we had quite good seats.
This lecture, or well… interview to be honest, was by Tim Hofman. He is well known here in The Netherlands because of his view on justiceship and fairness in today’s society, also a huge part of sustainability.
What stood by me most was this quote:
“Als je het goed doet en het meent, kun je massa maken.” which loosely translates to ‘If you do it well and truly stand behind it, you can create the masses.’
What I took from this is that when your heart is in it, do not give up. Go for what you believe in and gather like-minded people who are willing to stand by you. Some people might disagree or call you an idealist, but if you believe it is worth it, you will fight for it and listen to the people around you to find the cause and what is needed.
I will leave you with that for now and hope to hear from you, your view on sustainability and what you think we can do to improve it.
I’ll be here in this strange little town. Lots of love,
P.S. Curious what else I experienced at the ACT festival? Keep a lookout for my next blog posts.