49 Voices: Eli Pelletier of Anchorage

Eli Pelletier of Anchorage (Photo by Wesley Early, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage)

This week we’re hearing from Eli Pelletier in Anchorage. Pelletier was born in Canada and just moved to Alaska from Denmark a few months ago. He attends South Anchorage High and was part of this year’s Points of Light Leadership Institute program.

PELLETIER: I went to the Copenhagen International School which is the largest international school in all of Denmark. So there it was a very tightly-knit community in which everyone knew everyone, everyone really valued staying together, as we were the only people that knew each other in a foreign country.

It was always ingrained in my mind about how important it is to protect the environment, and the dangers of climate change. So I’ve always found that a vital issue in today’s world. And I want to continue advocating and discussing this issue.

I believe some kids don’t feel that they want to, that they’re not engaged enough with it. They don’t feel a responsibility today to help, as they may think other people may do it for me or they themselves just are too busy in their own lives to think about the broader picture. I believe that stems from education in society today in which it isn’t taught as much as I believe it’s necessary, that we live in a community which can use help of the young and how vital our contribution in society is, as we are the future.

So far coming to Alaska, I’ve noticed there is a strong community here which does advocate for social change and defending the ecosystem and the environment. And I find that very important. For example, here there’s so many people, young people, that are willing to step up and become leaders and I find that very inspiring and hopeful for the future.