• Wartawan Nabalu News

Adrian Lasimbang wins 2022 Global Ties Award for social innovation


Adrian Lasimbang

13 March 2022

By Wartawan Nabalu News


KOTA KINABALU: A Sabahan social and environmental activist Adrian Lasimbang has been awarded the 2022 Global Ties U.S. International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change.

The award which recognizes alumni of the US Department of State IVLP for high achievements in driving social change through innovation in the home communities was also conferred to Mehwish Abbasi, a journalist and freelance writer from Pakistan.


“Linking local initiatives to global movement. I was thrilled to be one of the winners of the 2022 Global Ties award for social innovation.


“I dedicate this to the whole team for the hard work and dedication,” said Adrian in a Twitter post today.


Adrian who is the founder of TONIBUNG, a social enterprise that promotes capacity-building training and renewable energy technology for rural communities, has 20 years of experience in conservation and developing community-led renewable energy solutions.


According to Global Ties U.S., both Adrian and Mehwish are leaders who empower marginalised communities to create equitable and inclusive strategies to address climate change.

Mehwish Abbasi

“In Portland, OR, Adrian learned about renewable energy, community-based project management, and how non-profit organizations in the United States are financed, while in New Mexico, he saw how indigenous communities, specifically the Pueblo Indians, create and manage their own energy systems.


“After his return from his IVLP, Adrian helped to spearhead and design community-led micro-hydro systems in remote indigenous villages in the Malaysian states of Sarawak and Sabah.


“This community-led model allows for indigenous communities, especially in remote regions, to own, manage, and operate their own energy systems. Adrian said by providing this energy access, can help address the issue of poverty which is very serious among indigenous communities,” said the non-profit organisation.


Meanwhile, Mehwish who has been covering topics such as women’s rights, education and the environment as a freelance writer said her IVLP experience helped build up her confidence as a public speaker and strengthen her vision to advance social justice and community-led solutions to climate change and development.


Since returning from her IVLP, Mehwish has become a leading voice in Pakistan for human rights in connection with climate change.


She also organized awareness sessions surrounding climate issues in her hometown, Bandhi, and become a mentor to young girls from her local province to teach them about climate change, social justice, and equality.