INTI Community Shows Love for the Environment in Beach Clean-Up Initiatives

June 22, 2022

The ocean is the lifeblood of our planet, so individuals and corporations should take the initiative to do everything they can to protect it. In a recent University Social Responsibility (USR) programme, students, staff, and alumni from INTI International University & Colleges spent their Sunday morning combing Pantai Morib for trash left behind on the coastlines.

The “Sea the Change” event, aptly organised by INTI’s Alumni Unit 29th May in the same month as World Environment Day, gave the INTI family a chance to give back to the environment and help reduce carbon footprint. It also created awareness about marine pollution and educated people about how even the smallest efforts can help to reduce garbage and plastics in the ocean. In addition to that, the event also helped to strengthen the relationship between alumni, students, and staff of INTI.

With the help of 115 pairs of hands, a total of almost 500 kilogrammes of garbage was collected in two hours. Among the items picked off the beach were plastic bottles, candy wrappers, food packaging, straws, face masks and cigarette butts. Before the event ended, three recycles bins were donated for the public to use and as a reminder to take better care of the beach and coastline.

Sharmila Sooriyamurthi, an executive from the Alumni Unit under INTI’s Career Services Department and also organiser of the event, said overflowing bins do not get emptied regularly so by increasing the number bins available to the public, it can help deter littering.

“I believe littering is an easy habit to pick up, but this habit contributes to the biggest factor for most environmental issues involving marine life, pollution and flash floods. Our own littering habit harms us without us realizing the consequences in the long run,” she said.

INTI International College Subang alumni Luqman Hakim Zulkarnain said the country’s beaches are often tarnished by locals due to lack of awareness on environmental issues.

“It is sad to see people discard trash without thinking of the consequences. It is actions like this that makes our waters more polluted than we can imagine,” he said.

INTI International University & Colleges Chief Executive Officer Chong Kok Wai said events such as this brings people face-to-face with the reality of marine pollution.

“Only when we physically see the quantity of plastic and trash littered on the beach will we understand the effort required to remove it. I hope this activity will encourage INTI staff and their families to practice a more environmentally friendly approach in life so we can reduce our waste footprint. No effort is too small and consistent efforts can make a difference,” Kok Wai said in his opening remarks.

Meanwhile, in Penang, a group of youths from the Hype+ Club and CADP Club from INTI International College Penang joined forces to do their part to raise awareness on marine pollution by organising a beach cleaning initiative at the Queensbay Coast on the same day as the beach clean-up at Pantai Morib.

One of the participants, Ooi Wen Tang, a student pursuing the Australian Degree Program at INTI International College Penang, said the activity made him realise that we can all help relieve some pressure from the oceans by using reusable tumblers or bottles.

“A lot of plastics were collected. If we want to enjoy more of what’s left in our environment, we need to do something for a cleaner and greener environment,” he said.

At INTI College Sabah, the college’s student government INTIMA organised a beach clean-up at Tanjung Lipat, Sabah, on 4th June. The event, which saw the participation of students from various programmes and staff, aimed to raise awareness about the importance of a clean environment and keeping public spaces clean.

At the end of the activity, over 78 kilogrammes of trash were collected by four groups in two hours. Group 1, which collected more than 30 kilogrammes of garbage, won vouchers sponsored by TeaLive Aeropod. Refreshments for the event were provided by TeaLive Aeropod and McDonald’s Tanjung Lipat.

Discarded dirty clothes were among the garbage picked up from Pantai Morib in Banting.

Abandoned fishing nets were found littering the local beach.

Participants worked together to lift a plastic road barrier on the beach.

Participants of the beach clean-up gather to stuff plastic bags with garbage found on the coastline

INTI International University & Colleges donated three recycle bins for public use at Pantai Morib, Banting.

Almost 500 kilogrammes of waste were collected by participants of the Sea the Change event at Pantai Morib, Banting

Participants from INTI International College Penang pose with their trash collection at Queensbay Coast, Penang

Chong Kok Wai, Chief Executive Officer of INTI International University & Colleges (front row, four from right) pose for a group photo with participants involving students, alumni, and staff

Participants from the beach clean-up activity organised by INTI College Sabah pose for a group photo