About the Authors: Andrew Griffin serves as Environment, Science, Technology, and Health Officer and Dan Holtrop as Assistant Public Affairs Officer at U.S. Consulate Guangzhou in China.
On April 17, 2010, U.S. Consulate Guangzhou hosted a Green Volunteers Forum that connected 50 college students from Sun Yat-Sen University with their peers at the University of California (UC) Santa Cruz to exchange views via video conference on volunteerism and the critical role volunteers play in environmental protection efforts. The forum was preceded in Guangzhou by a non-governmental organization (NGO) discussion focused on practical ways students can get involved as volunteers. The students from UC Santa Cruz carried out a water monitoring volunteer project ahead of the forum and then shared with their counterparts in Guangzhou best practices on the organization of volunteer activities and advice on forming student groups. Fulbright Scholar and Vermont Law School professor Jason Czarnezki spoke during the forum to students in both locations about different ways individuals can make a positive difference for the environment with only simple adjustments to our daily habits.