Lee-Alison Sibley, a multifaceted personality is here with us to share some inspiring words and thoughts. Ms. Sibley is indeed very generous and shared her valuable time.
Thank you Ms. Sibley for sparing few minutes amidst your busy schedule! We are really honored and humbled by your love.
Conserve India – Tell us about your background ––
My background is that I’m from New York and grew up loving to travel, read and study. I have been to 102 countries so far and I never want to stop my explorations of different lands and cultures. Along the way I earned a Master of Music Degree and a Master of Education Degree and I have used these skills around the world to teach and perform.
Conserve India – With this background, what encouraged you into environmental issues and social issues?
While traveling I have observed the scourge of poverty — I have witnessed children in rags begging, living near the railroad tracks without homes, no schools to attend, no clean water to drink or toilet facilities. I think environmental issues and social issues go hand in hand as the wealthy can afford to enjoy the benefits of clean air and drinking water — they only need to buy air filters and water filters for their homes if they are faced with pollution of both. An education can lift a person up and provide a new way of living, but too many children do not have the advantage of school, nutritious food and adequate sanitation. I was taught to stand up for the underprivileged — anyone without “a voice”– so I have worked to alleviate poverty and provide education, vocational training and a sanctuary for women and children in need. Allying myself with NGOs in different countries, I will continue this as my life’s work.
Conserve India – With your global experience, which is “the one” environmental issue and “the one” social issue that you think as severe threat?
Without a doubt, climate change (global warming) is the biggest threat to mankind. We are seeing the worst weather, the worst storms and more –encroaching deserts, loss of marine life (corals), melting glaciers and ice caps because of climate change due to man’s unwitting neglect while advancing industrially.
The most important social issue is education — education covers a broad area of subjects because education implies learning how to take care of ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally.
Conserve India – What do you think will be the solution for the same?
The solution for climate change is global awareness that this is real and for ALL countries to work together to stop the destruction of the environment. It is not the time to point fingers and place blame — the damage is done. Everyone finding alternative energy solutions, cleaning up our waters and recycling — each individual in the world can help — will go a long way.
As for education, governments large and small, rich and poor have to make this the top priority for all its citizens, but in a wise way. Teachers need to be well trained and paid a living wage. Students need to be empowered to learn by their families. It really does take a village to raise a child!
Conserve India – Which role of yours is quite close to your heart — author, vocal artist, teacher, actor or social activist?
Yes, I am all these roles and they all mean a lot to me, but my most important role is not on the list — I am a mother! I have two children who are my biological children and many more who are young people along the way I’ve mentored and gotten very emotionally attached to who call me “mom” and that means the world to me!
Conserve India – Guess Earth Day celebrations are keeping you busy. How was this experience of coordinating this event?
First off, I made a friend — Anita Ahuja — which is wonderful for me personally. There have been many meetings and the involvement of many different people so being organized is essential. In the end, it is a labor of love — to showcase the wonderful creations of Conserve India while showing people how we can eliminate a lot of waste in our lives and eliminate it by recycling, composting and being responsible citizens.
Conserve India – Is there anything else you would like to share about Earth Day Celebration at American Embassy?
Yes — this is going to be a real fun event for everyone who attends the special ‘waste not want not’ lunch and Conserve India fashion show. We also have 18 vendors selling products that are good for the environment, i.e. composting materials, organic produce, recycled clothing. Truly, there is something for everyone and I hope it is a huge success!
On an ending note, you can follow Ms. Sibley here – http://www.leealisonsibley.com/pages/index.php