‘The Dentsu Rise Up’ challenge calls on youth to address food wastage through creativity

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A whopping 725 tons of food is wasted in the Western Province every day in Sri Lanka. This is a worldwide issue and not just a local problem. Dentsu Grant Sri Lanka in line with Dentsu’s global initiative ‘The Rise Up Challenge’, is launching a unique competition to address the global issue of food wastage. It is a creative and innovative challenge for youth between the ages of 17-27 to test their creativity to come up with innovative solutions to tackle this problem and win exciting gifts for their creativity in finding solutions. The Rise Up Challenge aims to reverse this alarming statistic at a critical time when our nation is battling a severe economic crisis that has rendered nutritious food out of the reach of many vulnerable communities especially children, a spokesman said.

Commenting on the unique initiative, Neela Marikkar, Chairperson, Dentsu Grant Group said, “As catalysts of change, our industry must accelerate the transition to a more sustainable and inclusive world through the influence we wield as leading communications experts. The Global Rise Up Challenge aims to mobilise young people in Sri Lanka and around the world to get actively involved in shaping the world they live in. We are delighted to launch the Rise Up Challenge in Sri Lanka for the first time, bringing this opportunity to our youth to work on the theme -combating food waste- that is so crucial to our country right now”.

“We are hopeful that this meaningful campaign will bring about social change, as well as attract future talent to the industry, and to Dentsu, where we use creativity for the benefit of our society and our environment” she further added.

Sajith Weerasinghe, Chief Strategy officer, Dentsu Grant Group added, “We are culturally programmed to think of food as being ‘available in abundance’. This needs to change immediately. Our current relationship with food is not sustainable at all. When we see food, we do not see the resources and the effort that goes into it and the social and environmental consequences of wasting any food. The Western Province does not grow its own food. It’s cultivated elsewhere, using precious soil and water resources and transported to the Western Province only to have a large part of that wasted. Food waste is not a question of food security alone, as it’s closely linked to greenhouse gas emissions contributing to global warming, depleting resources like water, soil labour and fertiliser” We hope the participants of the Dentsu Rise Up Challenge will come forward with innovative and creative ideas to solve this national problem and in the process, also learn about the ill effects of food waste as well contributing towards reducing it.”

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