Leo, The Visionary & Your Local Hero | LEO, 你当地的英雄
This article is part of a series on The Chinese Changemakers, where I shine a spotlight on the young Chinese changemakers and community leaders. Today I believe we need a collaboration with the younger generation through their passion, their sense of duty to their families and communities and the urgency of our current climate crisis.
Through this series, you will follow my journey and go deeper into China and the wisdom she holds. How are the changemakers equipped for their future? How will they transform things for our common green future?
The journey is about friendship, passion, strong values, and authenticity.
Leo, The Visionary & Your Local Hero
>>> Chinese version below. 滚动下方查看中文文章
Leo is quite the celebrity in southwest China when talking about sustainability. From Chengdu in Sichuan to Dali in Yunnan, if you mention sustainability, you will be referred to him as someone who is very active in this field.
Originally from Anhui, he lived in multiple large cities in Asia. Before moving to Yunnan, he was in Chiangmai Thailand. He read a story about a very cool wet market in the province and made his way here.
Leo is a natural leader and an environmentalist at heart. He already lived out the values linked to the concept of sustainability and conscious consumption, and when he heard about Zero Waste in Shanghai, he then realized that this was an actual concept. Also, he realized more people shared similar values and ways of living, and that’s how one thing led to another, and he decided to make it his work as well.
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We met in Kunming where we shared a delicious vegan meal in one of his favorite local restaurants, he then proceeded to explain the ecosystem of the multiple changemakers in this part of China. He shared how many establishments are adopting greener practices, local schools show more interest in his services, and more importantly, the huge community he leads here.
He focuses on two main projects of his, the first one is called Green Solutions China, a social enterprise that focuses on raising awareness through programs for schools and companies providing them team building activities with other local organizations in Yunnan. The second project which is also dear to his heart is the zero plastic vegan tours he holds in Dali.
Leo has been vegan for two years. He says it was one of the easiest things he did, having never really craved animal products before.
He’s always on the lookout for new places, new restaurants, and farms that provide whole food plant-based dishes, and then creates tours for tourists who want to visit Yunnan in a more conscious and sustainable way.
A couple of days later we met up in Dali, where he introduced me to an incredible farm just outside of the old town, called Veggie Ark. This farm has multiple animals, they grow vegetables, flowers, and fruits organically. There’s a restaurant inside, a shop with healthy organic produce and local crafts.
This is where we held the first part of the interview.
The following day, we set out on the road to visit one of the few places that still does indigo dye in the traditional ways. The place seemed to be family-owned by a local minority. We then drove to other small towns across the region.
Leo and his community and company are gaining more and more attention and traction in this part of China, as larger companies are looking for exposure and raise awareness with their clients in this part of the country.
Watch the video here:
If you would like to know more about Green Solutions China, email him here:
Driving through #China and staying in remote places, immersing myself with locals, and sharing countless hours of discussions with industry experts, entrepreneurs, and community leaders have been quite the adventure.
I am deeply passionate about human and planet wellbeing, and the complexity of striving for a balanced bottom line People – Planet – Profits. Together with my team, we ran over 150 workshops and seminars in China alone, spoke at Tedx, and appeared on over 15 media channels in the world, including but not limited to The New York Times, Elle China, CGTN, China Daily, Time Out and many more.
I am also a speaker at waste management and sustainability conferences. Currently, I am consulting large international companies in sustainability, while also being on the road for the KAILU Project.
If you're interested to work with or consult me for a project related to sustainability, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
我也是废物管理和可持续性会议的发言人。目前，我正在咨询大型国际公司的可持续发展问题，同时也在进行 KAILU 开路项目。