The Caribbean Youth Environment Network (CYEN) and 350.org are stirring up something big with young people here in the Caribbean
CYEN, 350.org’s partner in the Caribbean, is hosting National Youth Roundtable Discussions throughout the Caribbean to jumpstart the conversation about climate change amongst youth in the region. We decided to launch the first one on June 5th World Environment Day, but due to issues with facilities and to accommodate the attendees we moved the event forward to June 6th, 2009 in the Ministry of Education’s conference room here in Barbados.
The meeting started with the usual introductions and just to make the room a little cozier. Then after a brief explanation of what climate change is just so everyone would be on the same page, we went straight into some group work.
The group work consisted of six (6) questions all of which essentially were meant to answer the main issue of the strategies that would be necessary to make climate change more appealing to Caribbean youth.
The feedback we got was very good…the general consensus was to appeal to the pockets of our youth. Show them the negative economic impacts of climate change, while at the same time let them know about the opportunities that can develop in areas such as green jobs. Ultimately, make it personal in every way, climate change affects the doctor, lawyer, university student, whomever it is make it personal for them.
The discussion terminated with a fun, quiz session which got the audience really involved. They were asked to give facts about climate change, CYEN and 350 so they could win 350 materials. It was a lot of fun thanks to the efforts of all the CYEN members present.
All in all it was very productive and from the networking session. I know many strategic partnerships were formed for CYEN and other youth organisations or individuals who are part of the climate change movement.
The event was also covered in the Barbados Advocate. Check it out: http://barbadosadvocate.com/newsitem.asp?more=local&NewsID=4126