For the 14th year running, the TEY (Toyota Eco Youth) program has garnered very encouraging response from schools all over the country. This year, there are 16 schools partaking for the TEY Champions crown, along with a grand prize of RM10,000. Second and third prizes award the runners up and second runners up RM 7,000 and 5,000, respectively. UMW Toyota Motor actually raised the prize money for this year’s TEY to encourage greater keenness amongst the members from the participating schools.
According to Dato’ Ismet Suki, President of UMW Toyota Motor, the increase in prize money was to motivate participants to do even better by coming up with creative and sustainable innovations with market value
that can withstand the test of time. “When we first started, our idea is to create eco champions and agents of
change in schools. With the participants’ overwhelming enthusiasm and initiative, we extended the program to include local communities in 2011 when the program celebrated its tenth anniversary,” Ismet reiterated.
Ismet reminded everyone that everything that we have all around us today such as clean water and air, green forests, a wide biodiversity did not happen automatically. They were concerted efforts by caring people in the past to plant trees and save the rivers or seas from pollution. This ideology coincides with the Guiding Principles of TMC (Toyota Motor Corporation).
The key idea of the Eco Youth program is to empower students with critical thinking skills through the Toyota 8-Step problem solving methodology. The intention here is to empower the participants on expanding their horizons in facing problems heads-on and refraining from over reliance on others. Participating students are charged to find creative and practical solutions to the environmental issues faced by their immediate communities and to engage the involvement of the locals in their tasks. Corresponding TEY tasks include documenting their experiences and sharing the experiences in the TEY blog, and presenting the entire project at the year-end’s closing ceremony. Points are attributed for project management, blog content, final presentation and impact on stakeholders.