IC Participation in the Trust for Sustainable Living International Student Debates, Seychelles, 2nd - 7th July, 2018
Twelve students and members of their families flew to the Seychelles for the week of sustainability debates and activities that have become a part of the school’s life, and in particular a very large element of the recently introduced IC Responsibility programme, aimed at capturing all the social and environmental activities the IC community is involved in, both on and off campus.
The debates are organised each year by the Trust for Sustainable Living (TSL), a not-for-profit organisation focused on education for sustainable lifestyles, and committed to promoting one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) each year. This year it was the turn of SDG 14: Life Below Water that was chosen as the core of the debates, as well as the preceding international essay competition.
Over 15 different countries had student representation; from Chile to New Zealand, and from Romania to India.
Our students experienced the very high-level of sustainability debating at the TSL competition yet were still able to come away with great respectability due to their commitment, enthusiasm and knowledge. Indeed, the two winning debate teams (Primary, ages 7-11; and Secondary, ages 12-18) were largely made up of IC students, who were then made even more famous on the third page of the national newspaper of the Seychelles! Coupled with that, two of our students, Alicia Mary Iskandarian and Kyle Khoury (both Ain Aar Upper School), were picked as child ambassadors to represent their debate teams during the expert panel discussion of the Ocean’s Conference held the following day (5th July).
In the essay competition, Hala Sharafeddine and Sophie Farsoun both placed in the Top 10 for the Primary competition.
The week together in the Seychelles wasn't simply about the competitions and conferences, however, with the near 40-strong IC community contingent enjoying their time together in a truly spectacular environment. Many enjoyed boat trips and snorkelling and scuba diving experiences, as well as gaining an understanding of the Seychellois culture and heritage and sampling the local cuisine, either on the beach or in one of the restaurants near to our location of Beau Vallon, Mahe Island. Indeed, the group were also able to showcase some Lebanese customs and traditions, including the Lebanese traditional dress as well as a fine rendition of the dabke, which had pretty much every other nationality dancing it by the end!
Here's looking forward to next year's TSL competition set to take place in British Columbia, Canada, under the theme of SDG 15: Life on Land.