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It’s been really hot in Turkey these past 10 days, but that hasn’t stopped more than 80 youth climate activists from all over the world from sharing ideas and building the connective tissue of the 350 movement. There’s nothing that warms our hearts more than watching young people build power and beginning to lead in their communities

The photo you see above is taken in one of the oldest amphitheaters on earth, in Ephesus, Turkey. The ancient bard Homer, author of the Odyssey, was born and lived much of his life only a few dozen kilometers away. This past Wednesday we took time off from all the hard work and took a day trip to Ephesus, our minds abuzz, spinning with thoughts of our own personal Odysseys to climate activism — how we got here, and where each of us will go after this amazing experience.

It was incredible to be part of 80 youth cllimate leaders standing on one of the oldest spots on this side of the earth to shout out the 350 message! It also reminded us that we have a long way to go. 80 of us will not solve the problem alone, so we have to become nodes of action back home — small flames burning around the world, spreading like wildfire as October 24 approaches.

We have to tell stories, like Homer did, weaving in our own personal courage while inspiring people to action. We must embark upon a new global Odyssey, joining together and turning the boat towards a brighter future. That’s why we’re here in Turkey — to turn the boat towards 350 and begin sailing that direction.

We still have a week to go during which we will bring the knowledge we’ve been build up in our different tracks into our discussions of climate change and the 350 campaign. But most important are the deepening friendships we have fostered in this very short time, but which will survive into the future.

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