This blog post is by Jillian, an intern on the Activist Network team in San Francisco:
Hi, my name is Jillian. I’m an Activist Network intern in the San Francisco office this summer. I’m from Sarasota, Florida and already in love with the work I’m doing at Greenpeace!
Last week, the San Francisco interns organized an event to help save the remaining Indonesian rainforests from Asia Pulp and Paper (APP). If you’re reading this blog, you probably know that APP is responsible for cutting thousands of acres of Southeast Asian forest, causing the destruction of wildlife habitat and contributing to global warming. Mattel, the largest toy company in the world and maker of Barbie, contributes to this problem by buying their paper packaging from this rainforest destroyer. At Greenpeace, we are committed to stopping Mattel from supporting rainforest destruction by APP.
It all started at 10am when we arrived at the Greenpeace office. Our eye-catching posters – artfully crafted from markers and poster board – told the public to “make a quick call to stop deforestation!” and “tell Mattel to stop destroying rainforests!” Three interns donned Sumatran tiger costumes and we all headed to Embarcadero Plaza in downtown San Francisco. (You should have seen the surprised looks from people on the bus as three Sumatran tigers hopped on board!)
For two hours, the nine of us purred and growled as we walked around the Plaza, encouraging folks to make phone calls to the Mattel headquarters. At first, we were anxious about how the public would react. Would everyone stroll past us, avoiding eye contact? Would they laugh and point their fingers? We soon discovered that our fears were unfounded. When we explained that their one-minute phone call might lead to some major corporate policy changes at Mattel, people got excited. Some people were really enthusiastic and called all five Mattel phone numbers! Our efforts paid off BIG TIME. Even Alec Pedersen, co-producer of The Cove documentary, stopped by to make some calls!
At the end of the two hours of phone calls, we were tired but extremely proud of ourselves. We surpassed every goal we had set, ultimately making over 55 calls to Mattel. I was truly inspired by how the event turned out and how well the nine interns worked together. This was the first time we collaborated on a project and the event turned out great! We’re developing a supportive, adaptive, FUN Greenpeace intern team that I’m so excited to be part of!
If this is any indication of the rest of the summer at Greenpeace (as I suspect it is), this is going to be the greatest summer EVER. You can take part in the action too. Join our campaign to save the Indonesian rainforests. Sign up to join the Activist Network today!