Fuelled By Community: Reflections on 2020 From Our Founders

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They say we are only as strong as our communities. This has been some of the most daunting of periods, but at the same time, navigating this global battle against COVID-10 has forced us to come together to adapt, restrategize, and innovate as a team – and as a community. It truly has been a year like none other; and a journey that has been nothing short of an eye-opening and heartfelt experience.



So as the whirlwind of 2020 draws to a close, we’re taking some time to ponder and reflect on the year that was, and peer into the window of 2021. While we remember how we have fought to stay afloat, we also want to celebrate the milestones we managed to hit even in the midst of a pandemic!

 

  • Several new partner brands have joined us this year to become part of our amazing family of Green Kakis. We’re excited to have all of them onboard, and look forward to creating better tomorrows together as a collective! 

  • In August we also took the next step and had the digital launch of our ecommerce platform The Green Tingkat. We’re so thankful for the immense support from our community and partner brands, which have enabled us to make it all happen.

  • We hosted numerous live workshops and webinars, to continue our mission to build up our community of changemakers and create a responsible Green Kampung. 

  • We found another home in Fairprice Finest Marine Parade – stocking a wide variety of items from kitchenware, to beauty and wellness, to food! We’re honored to have the opportunity to bring sustainable living to supermarkets.

  • Last but not least, we hit 10K followers on Instagram!

 

Our three founders Danielle, Mayur and Agatha “Agy” share their thoughts and reflect on how the year has been for them – and their experiences of tiding through the headwinds of this crazy year:


Danielle Champagne

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This year has been a challenging one for most people - how did you ground yourself when it was overwhelming? 

To be honest, this year has not been that overwhelming for me. Patience and calmness are 2 of my strengths; and since I am quite "homey", this whole COVID situation did not provoke additional stress on a personal level. Of course there was the added worries about my aging family, and the idea of not seeing the grown-up kids for a while is not fun. But I’ve always believed that when you have no control over a situation, there is no point in stressing out. 

 

What is one key thing you learnt (whether in personal development or as a business owner) this year? 

Resilience and perseverance for sure! It would have been tempting to toss the towel, especially when you see so many businesses around giving up. But racking our brains together as a team and acting on potential solutions proved successful. 

 

If you could travel back in time to the beginning of the year, what's a piece of advice you would give yourself? 

Stop procrastinating about getting back on the piano, and just do it! 






Mayur Singh

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This year has been a challenging one for most people - how did you ground yourself when it was overwhelming? 

I rely on a lot of breathing exercises whenever situations truly get overwhelming. My other option is to write, which I tend to sometimes. I’ve been writing much more this year because of more time available in general, especially during the Circuit Breaker period. In essence, I am the type of person who prefers to disconnect, regroup and then get back to the task – these methods work a lot for me whenever I get stressed out.

What is one key thing you learnt (whether in personal development or as a business owner) this year? 

To focus on the core business issue. During the Circuit Breaker, our team at The Green Collective were brainstorming on the various options for our next steps during this period of uncertainty. We were wondering what to do, and finally we decided to not take the most popular option (i.e. website), but went for the most logical one – selling composters via google forms first, to test appetite for online sales. This decision proved to be a good one, as we not only managed to survive these challenging times, but also managed to support our community by not passing the cost of operations on to them.

 

If you could travel back in time to the beginning of the year, what's a piece of advice you would give yourself? 

Read more. Write more. Express more.



Agatha Lee “Agy”

This year has been a challenging one for most people - how did you ground yourself when it was overwhelming?  

The initial stages of our country going into Circuit Breaker were overwhelming at first. But as our team focused on the necessary actions to keep the business going, it became less so, and instead more of "how can we overcome this, and what opportunities are there?"  I was more worried about my family who are based overseas – not being able to see them was a concern for me.  On an individual level I did a lot of reading, cooking and of course, art – it was actually great to spend more time on these aspects and learn new things/skills!

 

What is one key thing you learnt (whether in personal development or as a business owner) this year? 

Change is a good opportunity!  Having this in mind helped steer things (business & personal) in a positive manner.

 

If you could travel back in time to the beginning of the year, what's a piece of advice you would give yourself?  

I would have said to myself, "Don't sweat the small stuff".  It's normal to worry of course, but then if you have the end in mind, and don’t lose sight of your goals, you realise problems have solutions!





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What keeps us going is being able to inspire the growing number of new people outside the green community to become sustainable. Sowe leave this year with an excitement for a brand new chapter, to continue to make meaningful progress in furthering the local eco landscape. We’re looking forward to empowering more people with useful skills and knowledge that will help them in their green journey!