Hi! My name is Maitreyi Siruguri and I recently joined The Climate Center as an ECO2school Program Coordinator.
I was born and raised in India, for the most part in big metropolitan cities, however I was always drawn to the countryside and the serenity of nature. I had the opportunity to explore life away from home and away from the big cities when I was sixteen, in a boarding school in rural Andhra Pradesh, India. This school, started by the Krishnamurti Foundation, centered around a deep exploration of our relationship to nature, to one another, and to problems of fear, authority, competition, love, and freedom. In J.Krishnamurti’s words, “A school is a place where one learns about the totality, the wholeness of life. Academic excellence is absolutely necessary, but a school includes much more than that. It is a place where both the teacher and the student explore, not only the outer world, the world of knowledge, but also their own thinking, their own behavior.”
This educational experience during my high school years shaped my world view in a profound way and attuned me to being more aware of myself and my surroundings. It set me on a path to explore subjects related to human behavior, social change, community organizing, social justice, sustainable development, and related topics. In the years that followed, upon completing a Bachelors in Psychology and Masters in Social Work/ Community Development from India, I had the opportunity to work with non-profit organizations addressing issues related to universalization of elementary education and advancing the quality of education in rural India.
I have lived in Santa Rosa for a little over a decade now with my husband and two kids, ages seven and four. When I came to the US in 2006 and was finding my way around Sonoma County, two critical things happened: the release of the documentary “An Inconvenient Truth” and witnessing a presentation by Ann Hancock on climate change at a Leadership class in Santa Rosa. Not much later, I joined CCP to head up the Schools program. I am back at it now and very excited and honored to be mentoring and training youth climate leaders in our high school communities. I look forward to interacting with many more students who would like to be more involved with our ECO2schools program!