Meet Máximo Mazzocco, an environmental advocate whose drive to build a sustainable society underpins the education initiatives of the global non-profit Eco House, which he founded as a teenager.
Like many young people, Máximo Mazzocco grew up seeing the world’s problems firsthand, right on the street corners of his native Buenos Aires. Biodiversity loss, waste disposal and other environmental problems are a global challenge, but they are particularly acute in Argentina, where there are more than 5,000 open garbage dumps and 70% of forests have been destroyed in last 200 years.
“Something inside myself said, ‘I cannot see all of this and do nothing’”, Máximo says. “I decided that this was what I wanted to do with my life, to work to make the lives of others better.”
Today, his impassioned advocacy is expanding through Eco House, the non-profit he founded in 2016 to promote sustainable development. Eco House’s operating philosophy reflects Máximo’s personal mantra toward ambitious endeavors like the Global Goals: Small actions by many can create big change.
“I grew up in this environment, wondering about how we could really do better,” says Máximo. “And when I say ‘we,’ it is not just Argentines. It is Argentina, it is Latin-America and it is also all the people of the world who need to work together.”
As a teenager, Máximo educated himself about climate change and environmental health. He then took to the streets of Buenos Aires to educate his community about the different aspects of sustainability, reaching 400 households in just eight months. He had a knack for persuading people. But, he says, “I thought, if one person can do this, how about 50? Or 100?”
When Máximo founded Eco House, he recruited 11 volunteers to join him. Today, the organization boasts one of the region’s largest populations of volunteers: more than 700. “We believe that every person can do just a little bit,” he says, “and that this can bring about big changes.”
Becoming a Global Citizen
Over the years, Máximo has evolved Eco House and expanded its reach. It now operates 40 programs at a local and global level. Máximo’s personal mission puts “the socio-environmental issues at the top of the political, public and private agenda to generate as many change agents as possible.”
In the last couple of years, Máximo directly participated in the approval of more than 40 socio-environmental laws in Argentina, actively intervened to generate more than 20 Youth Councils with a global impact, organized digital communication campaigns that reached more than 20 million users and educated more than 100,000 children in Argentina.
Right now, Máximo focuses on policy, working with government agencies, political parties, grassroots movements and companies. He insists that this is just the start of even more meaningful change ahead.
“Our generation is probably the last one that can do something before a global collapse,” says Máximo. “We just need the right amount of people doing the right thing.”
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