Living for a Cause Greenpeace and Its People

by Kumi Naidoo

October 26, 2012 What is the most surprising thing about working at Greenpeace? I asked a new colleague at work the other day. She looked to the side and took a moment before she replied. She finally turned to me and said: The most surprising thing is Greenpeace staff: there is nothing really shocking about them. They arenormal. I immediately understood what my colleague was referring to. When I joined Greenpeace three years ago I expected to see more people who looked like me, with long beards, shirts with flowers on them and so on. Actually what I found here were scientists, intellectuals, some of the best communications specialists and interestingly enough, people from the business community: an eclectic community made up of people with a wide variety of skills and maybe most importantly, with an infinite passion for our planet. People gravitate to Greenpeace because were not an organisation that talks and talks; we take the action that needs to be taken. I think for young people in particular, the fact that were willing to do this rather than just talk is something that resonates very strongly with them and makes us real in their eyes. But its not everyday that we climb oil rigs or disrupt high level meetings to get our messages across. Most of us at Greenpeace spend eight hours or more a day working on our computers in the office; we all feel empowered and engaged directly in the fight to save the environment by the actions taken by our staff and our many volunteers worldwide. I encourage you to take another look at what we do here at Greenpeace, if you havent already. Im certain youll find something unexpected like I did.
Kumi Naidoo

By Kumi Naidoo

Kumi Naidoo has served as executive director of Greenpeace International since November 2009.

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