Climate change has forced our society to think about the choices we make today and its impact on the future. And that future is the nearly 2.2 billion people under the age of 18 in this world of which 85 percent are living in developing countries. The children and the youth are the ones who will bear the brunt of climate change and live in the world we leave behind.
Rather than standing by for others such as the leaders of corporations and governments to make decisions about their future, the youth have taken matters into their own hands and are actively shaping their future with their voice and activism in their communities and in the world. A few of the many remarkable initiatives include
- Youth Climate Report (YCR), a crowdsourced science journalism project — by youth for the world.
- YOUNGO, an international youth movement that has official constituency status in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
- Australian Youth Climate Coalition (AYCC), a coalition of Australia’s major youth organisations focused on engaging young Australians to take action in their schools, universities, and communities, and in national climate change campaigns.
So on this day, August 12th, International Youth Day, we celebrate their creativity, unrelenting determination, leadership, and courage to "be the change they wish to see in this world".
To learn more, check out out UNICEF's publication "Youth in action on climate change: inspirations from around the world" available online!