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  wild people: Grant

Grant is a Force of Nature. You cannot meet him and remain unchanged :-)

For me, I was blown away, like in a hurricane. His energy, his passion, his wisdom. I turn to him whenever I need a sense of renewal in our work.

To try to outline Grant's long long list of involvements and achievements is beyond a mere mortal to attempt.
I would just try to sum it up by saying that Grant is among the few I have met who really walks the talk, and walks more than he talks. And he is fearless in both walking and talking. Though he looks fearsome (the Ubin folks call him "Osama"), he is the kindest and gentlest of souls :-) I have been blessed with many happy moments, spent working or just living life, with Grant and his wonderful group of volunteers.

Here's more about Grant...

55 year old Grant Pereira joined the budding Environmental in the early 70's and 30 years later, he's still at it.

On the local scene, he joined the Green Volunteers Network in 1999, became the first head volunteer in 2001 and in 2003, joined the Singapore Environment Council Full time as Head of the Green Volunteers Network

In 2000, he was awarded the Green Leaf Award by the Ministry of Environment.

On the International scene, he is the Asian Educational Coordinator for the Seashepherd Conservation Society and sits on their International Board of Advisors.

Grant is still very active and can be seen cleaning or planting mangroves at Pasir Ris Park or conducting nature walks at Pulau Ubin.

He is a registered nature guide with the Singapore Tourism Board. When asked about the environment and his involvement, here's what Grant had to say

"Life is short but try and make it as broad as you can. Don't just sit back and moan and groan about the environment - do something - go plant mangroves or clean a beach.

The world has more than enough of armchair conservationists. You can't do anything about deforestation in Brazil or even the haze coming from Indonesia but you can plant trees, don't buy teak, mahogany and other endangered timber.

Instead of changing your wooden furniture once every two years, how about once every 4 years?

Roll up your sleeves and come join us for a mangrove cleaning or replanting session. There's a great satisfaction in getting your feet wet and hands dirty knowing that you helped in a very small way of making Singapore (and the world) a little bit cleaner and greener and most importantly, never be afraid to speak the truth to power - its one of the qualities of a true patriot.

If not you - who?
If not here - where?
If not now - when ?"

More on how YOU can make a difference too...

Posted by otterman Posted on 11/08/04 09:51
Over the years, more young people I meet in a programme have encountered Grant through some SEC activity. This has been an invaluable outlet for their interests and an opportunity to learn about issues, guiding techniques, knowledge about specific places in Singapore and a chance to interact with other enthusiasts and members of the public. Since Grant is NOT politically correct, he also forces you to grapple with your perceptions - i.e. think. And I like his "do something" attitude, quickly, simply and cheaply.

Posted by zonda Posted on 11/08/04 16:55
Man! He's inspirational!

Posted by grayowl Posted on 11/08/04 18:35
My first encounter with him was at the Ubin kopitiam next to the jetty. What an impression he had made on me! Certainly an icon of local nature scene! (^^) BTW, Ria, you make a good columnist!

Posted by gerry Posted on 11/08/04 20:09
Grant is very inspirational.... not very many people are willing to make a stance in this world and especially this society. He makes a stance and walks the talk. Really cool. I admire his radical environmentalism and his commitment to the cause.

Posted by smint79 Posted on 11/08/04 22:29
We need to strike a balance between man and nature, radical enviromentalism is not what we want - to be able to throw in the negative to acquire the positive is what we should do.

Posted by zanycow Posted on 11/08/04 23:24
Could you please explain what you meant by throw in the negative? (Quite baffled...)

Posted by voyager Posted on 11/08/04 23:30
I guess what was meant was that one should carry a balanced perspective regarding the environment and development. I have met Grant, and in my own personal opinion, I think he's sort of the Dark Side of the Green Movement here in Singapore. Sometimes it's a good thing, and causes people to think about issues that are important. Other times, it's annoying and people "switch off". So ideally, the way to preach is to meet a person from where he is coming from, rather than shoving your message down their throat whether they want to listen or not. At least, that is the way from my point of view.

Posted by zanycow Posted on 11/08/04 23:38
Guess the same goes for everything else.

Posted by greenEd Posted on 15/08/04 17:37
U can't miss Grant in a crowd & we need all sort of people to fight the same cause.


these blog entries were first uploaded on MoBlog Singapore! Celebrate Singapore NDP 04
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