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    The International School Bangkok (ISB) learning community empowers students to become change-makers wherever they are, in whatever they are doing. It takes a very special atmosphere, community of people, and learning environment to empower individuals to become drivers of change. One way this is modeled is by the foundation Service in the Wild (formerly known as After the Wave) which was initially founded by ISB faculty to help Thailand after the Tsunami and since then has supported the community of Nong Ya Plong, where ISB’s Environmental Wilderness Campus is located. ISB offers just the right mix for students and faculty alike to pursue positive change that aligns with their passions. 

    Fostering Passion for Sustainability & the Environment

    One passion many of our students and faculty share is sustainability and environmental change. In an era when environmental concerns are high, ISB faculty and students have taken considerable steps in fostering sustainable practices within its community, city, and country. The journey began before the COVID-19 pandemic, with faculty members gathering to address air quality concerns related to PM 2.5 and researching possible solutions.

    Over time, these efforts have grown into a multi-faceted student-led campaign that aims to reduce plastic waste, enhance air quality, and address debt and poverty within the agricultural sector. This blog explores the journey of their dedicated efforts, with a particular focus on the latest milestone – the GRACZ project

    sugarcane field
    sugarcane farming

    Initiating Sustainable Change: How Faculty Began the Journey

    The story begins before COVID-19 reshaped the world, as ISB faculty members engaged in extensive research and consultation with external experts to understand the pressing issue of PM 2.5 and environmental pollution. The team's collective knowledge soon led them to focus their efforts on the areas surrounding the ISB Wilderness Campus and the sugarcane industry, a significant regional crop that is often burned.

    ISB Students' Early Engagement in Sustainability Initiatives

    ISB students joined the faculty in their quest to combat plastic waste and improve air quality, and their journey took a significant step forward when they visited a sugarcane field during the summer of 2023. This visit allowed the students to understand the barriers to sustainable agriculture and how sugarcane farming played a crucial role in their local environment.


    Engaging with GRACZ Packaging

    In the fall of 2023, ISB High School students continued their exploration by meeting with the CEO of Biodegradable Packaging for Environment Plc. Under the brand GRACZ. GRACZ is an Epicure supplier specializing in biodegradable products for the food and beverage industry. During this meeting, the students discussed the ambitious goal of creating a zero-plastic ISB. GRACZ sustainable packaging products can now be found at The Grind cafe as well as in the cafeteria. 

    Further Progress: A Visit to the GRACZ Factory

    In their pursuit of sustainable solutions, ISB Middle School and High School students visited the GRACZ factory to gain a better understanding of the sustainable procedures and practices.

    This visit provided valuable insights into all-natural packaging and waste management practices. Below are some reflections from students on the trip:

    "This was a chance to really go in depth about an important social issue..." said ISB High School student, Angelina.

    "This was more meaningful than just raising money, we're doing something that will last a long time..." said ISB Middle School student, Mina.

    "It was really hands on and we got to see behind the scenes about what happens..."

    said ISB High School student, Mui Mui.

    Following this visit, the Head of Research and Development from GRACZ also came to ISB to meet with our students and explain the process of transforming sugarcane waste into plant-based products, an initiative eagerly anticipated by both Middle School and High School students.

    students in meeting
    sugarcane meeting
    students with teacher
    thank you

    Letters to the World

    Before the inception of the GRACZ project, ISB students explored various avenues to tackle plastic waste and air quality concerns. They authored letters addressed to government bodies, corporations, and NGOs, emphasizing the urgency of these issues. These letters stand as a testament to the commitment and determination of the students to create a better, more sustainable future.

    Pilot Project: A Glimpse into the Future

    The journey culminates with the forthcoming pilot project – GRACZ in which our students will take all they've learned and apply it to the growers of sugarcane and other crops. It is both literally and figuratively 'grassroots' innovation. 

    With a focus on sugarcane waste, and hopes to extend to banana, pineapple, cassava, and other crops, this initiative promises to greatly impact local communities across Thailand by providing environmentally friendly, biodegradable solutions. The project aims to significantly reduce plastic waste and improve air quality by replacing traditional packaging materials with sustainable alternatives.

    ISB students and faculty have joined forces to address the critical issues of plastic waste and air quality, embarking on a journey that has evolved from PM 2.5 research to sustainable agriculture and innovative biodegradable products. Their commitment to creating a more environmentally conscious campus, spearheaded by this project with GRACZ, demonstrates that change is possible through collaboration and determination. 

    As we approach a new year, we eagerly anticipate all that these students and faculty will do to make our world more sustainable and eco-friendly, setting an example for educational institutions worldwide.



    Community High School Staff Middle School Student