“Question Everything” became the core statement for my project. This phrase was inspired by my time spent volunteering at the Austin Zoo, a local rescue zoo. While there, I was introduced to tigers, bears, birds, and an entirely different way of life. Every rescued animal was there because of human apathy, disregard, or indifference. I began to question the systems that allowed these animals to end up in this situation. This opened the door to my self-initiated research about all things zoos, from “How did tigers end up in Texas?” to “Why do zoos exist?” Volunteering urged me to question problems I didn’t even know existed, making me want to read more about the issue that had become embedded in my weekly life.
crux aspires to create this agency in its users about all environmental issues. Only when people experience increased individual agency, can mass political, social, and cultural change occur. Agency often begins with a simple thought or action; crux encourages both. An often challenging portion of this equation is knowing where to start, or which question to address. It is easy to become overwhelmed when confronted with the plethora of issues mankind is facing (global warming, deforestation, poverty, mass extinction, overpopulation, and beyond). crux’s web platform aims to simplify this by encouraging users to focus on one issue a month by reading related articles and taking action through volunteering locally. Whether a new question is asked or a volunteer sheet is signed, crux encourages the first steps to becoming a part of the answer to the larger problems humanity is facing.