The clock was ticking. Every tick of its hand tugged harder at my eyelids, beckoning them to close. My arms ached slightly as they cradled my head, whose eyes stared almost blankly towards a luminescent projector screen. The voice of our lecturer seemed to have melted into background noise, drowned by the whirring of my friend’s laptop placed a few inches from my resting ear.
He had Facebook open (as I’m sure many people that day did) and was scrolling through a few Humans of New York (HONY) posts (if you’re not aware of this page, I sincerely recommend you to check it out here) Something about HONY captured people’s hearts, and mine. He had a way to reveal the extraordinary, the good, the bad and the ugly in our species. Brutally honest hardships were so effortlessly highlighted in a few sentences and a photograph.
My gaze slowly shifted back to the projector screen where dire predictions of our worsening climate, our energy crises, our water shortages, were all up for everyone to see. Why are we so unable to solve this problem, I thought? Awareness of it permeated through most of modern society, especially in our generation. Almost everyone agreed that this is a problem we need to fix. Then what was stopping us from doing so?
I tried to put myself in my friends’ shoes. Those that were disinterested in this issue. While they agreed on the urgency of the problem, I think they saw it more ‘out-there’ than anything else.
For them, the problem was ‘out-there’. The implications were ‘out-there’. Even the people to solve this were ‘out-there’. And then I realized that the underlying reason behind this issue, energy, was also ‘out-there’ for most people.
After all, it is abstract, invisible and hence, difficult to relate to.
How do you get people to relate to something that is ‘out-there’? My mind immediately skipped back to HONY. The people he interviewed were ‘out-there’. Many were the kind of people I had never met and may indeed never meet in my life. And yet, I was able to relate to them, to their trials and tribulations, to their victories and triumphs.
It was then I realized that what made HONY so powerful was not the photos, but the stories.Stories of our world, stories of our surroundings and stories of people, shaped by those surroundings and circumstances. And that, I think is the answer.
Stories. Energy Stories.
That is what this initiative is about.
Your stories. My stories. Our stories. Energy Stories.
The idea is a platform where day-to-day stories of how energy shapes our lives can be shared. The stories would be surprising yet understandable, quirky yet relatable and most importantly, not boring.
The best amateur skill-set me and some of my friends possess is digital photography and I thought that conveying these stories through eye-popping and interesting photographs would be much more effective than plain text. And that idea shaped the formation of ‘The Energy Stories’ Facebook page, which started less than a month ago.
Today, I invite you: members of the one of the world’s largest student energy networks, to follow these stories. To contribute your own stories. And most importantly, to learn, laugh, engage and share. I have come to Student Energy because it inspires me. Seeing such a large group of my peers caring and acting on causes important to me, is very encouraging, very uplifting.
So, please check the page out here. If you’d like to share some of YOUR energy stories, that’d be awesome! They can be conveyed through pictures/videos/music/whatever medium you would like. Check out our stories so far to get a grasp of what our style is. Even if you just have an interesting photo, send it over! We’ll draft the story.
Please send anything you’d like for us to consider to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you so much for your patience in reading this guys!
Let’s put our heads together and let’s engage. Let’s engage and let’s change.