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Students with a ‘burning desire’ to help in Nepal

Published:10 December 2019

Public Health student Adrian Gorringe (top) was among CQUni students on an excursion to Nepal recently.

CQUniversity students went to Nepal with an open mind about how they could offer help, drawing on their studies into Public Health, Environmental Health and Environmental Science.

Speaking to locals, they identified a trend of using plastic bottles as fire starters, often indoors, leading to air pollution and health concerns.

The students not only designed an awareness campaign to educate villagers about the dangers; they also showcased alternative uses of the plastic bottles as plant boxes and vegetable growing tubs.

Public Health student Adrian Gorringe said he found Nepal fascinating.

“I’ve visited 28 countries and consider myself well travelled but Nepal was a really unique culture,” the Rockhampton-based student said.

“The CQUni students from the different degrees pitched in and worked well together to promote a range of health and environmental interventions via demonstrations, pamphlets and posters.

“We were able to work with schoolchildren to arrange a big clean-up day, and also left behind a range of reusable bags, bins and tongs for future clean-ups.”

Senior Lecturer in Environmental Health Dr Lisa Bricknell said the lesson plans and activities developed by CQUni students will be used by FutureSense Foundation volunteers in partner schools in Kathmandu and Dhulikel.

"This is a really important point about our trips -  the work we do is informed by the communities we work in and it’s sustainable because the intervention is continued into the future," Dr Bricknell said.

This project formed part of CQUGlobal Outbound, which provides opportunities for CQUni students to study overseas, and was delivered in partnership with The FutureSense Foundation and Challenges Abroad. Discover how you can study or intern abroad as part of your course via cquglobal-out@cqu.edu.au or by calling 07 4930 9671.