Announcing ClimateGen’s summer institute for Climate Change Education, plus disabled youth climate activist Izzy Laderman. Getting to know OurClimateVoices.org, and Costa Rica’s Children’s Eternal Rainforest.
ClimateGen’s Summer Institute, Meet Disabled Youth Climate Activist Izzy Laderman & Our Climate Voices, Costa Rica’s Children’s Eternal Rainforest
CLIMATEGEN’S SUMMER INSTITUTE FOR CLIMATE CHANGE EDUCATION
Head’s up everybody, ClimateGeneration is hosting their 16th Summer Institute for Climate Change education. Are you curious about the six themes of climate change education? From July 28–30, educators from across North America will dive into just that with keynote speakers and sessions. We’ve got three days of virtual content-based interactive workshops, discussed-based sessions, networking mixers, and a field-based experience! In partnership with @noaaclimate and @youthclimate. #SICCE2021.
Climate Generation is a non-profit whose mission is to empower individuals to engage in solutions to climate change, and according to its website, its vision is a world of resilient communities with equitable solutions to climate change. Themes include:
1 Climate Change Science & Solutions
2 Combating Misinformation, Science Denial, and Developing Media Literacy
3 Exploring Ways of Knowing
4 Beliefs in Stories and Personal Experiences
5 Shifting Power and Voice to Marginalized Communities
6 Teachers as Advocates for Youth Power
The cost is $250 to register. Scholarships are available. To register, surf on over to www.theclimate.org/episodes and click on the link in the Deeper Dive section of this story.
DISABLED YOUTH CLIMATE ACTIVIST IZZY LADERMAN
Izzy Laderman is a 17-year-old disability justice activist currently based in Duluth, Minnesota. She’s part of a group called, Disability Awareness Around the Climate Crisis. Izzy has Ehlers Danlos syndrome which, among other challenges, causes her chronic pain and can limit her mobility- a reason why she sometimes uses mobile aids. Izzy’s work focuses on how disability justice intersects with climate justice and sex education.
Izzy’s disability makes her keenly aware that people with disabilities are often left out of the climate movement. So she created @DAAClimateCrisis on Instagram. She creates infographics, in-person lesson plans and webinars designed to get (in her words) able-bodied people aware of the challenges disabled face in the face of climate change, as well as the contributions they can make to the benefit of all.
Says Izzy, “When people share the information, others can learn and work to make things more inclusive for people with disabilities. Because right now, we have people who are disabled trying to fight for things in the climate movement. But fighting by yourself can be really really hard, and people might not take you as seriously. You need your friends to help you out. You need your neighbors to help you out every once in a while.”
Her advice? Educate yourself. Include disabled people in the planning sessions. And support places like the World Institute on Disability.
OUR CLIMATE VOICES
Not long ago, I saw an interview of the great Black American woman and playwright Lorraine Hansberry. The interview took place in 1960, and the interviewer asked why Hansberry thought her play, “A Raisin in the Sun” had resonated and become so successful with white audiences. Her response was that it was perhaps due to her ability to address the universal through the specific.
Climate change is one such universal. Nobody will be immune to its effects, and it’s so big may people don’t know how to support their communities or themselves through this transition into the Era of Climate Change. That’s where a group like Our Climate Voices stands out. Founded by Aletta Brady, it’s a group of “innovative, passionate young people who believe in the power of youth organizing,” according to its website. But that’s not what sets them apart.
It’s that Our Climate Voices connects people with grassroots climate change solutions, three ways. First, OCV seeks to humanize the climate crisis through storytelling. It’s their belief that personal climate change stories should be included more often in media dialog. Second, OCV strives to “center the voices of those most impacted.” So OCV provides a platform to amplify their voices. And third, OCV will connect you with grassroots solutions designed to make a difference now.
Each year since 2017, OCV has produced a reading series of first-person narratives. They also feature workshops and projects like Climate Visions, Climate Remedy and a Climate Grief art exhibition. Powerful, soulful, hopeful stuff.
THE CHILDREN’S ETERNAL RAINFOREST
Hey, sabes algo sobre el bosque eterno de los niños en costa rica?
Have I heard of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest? Yeah, no.
Honestly, I’d heard rumors but it wasn’t until we were researching the Our Climate Voices story that I found out the rumors were true. See back in 2017, OCV produced the first person narrative of a man named Guillermo, from Monteverde in Costa Rica.
In his story, he describes his connection to the farms and forests of Monteverde and How he went abroad to study to become a forestry engineer. And how in 1986, he was a founding member of the Monteverde Conservation League. Having raised money to protect part of the rainforest, his group helped create the International Children’s Rainforest. He goes on to talk about his role creating environmental education and reforestation programs.
The origins of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest is almost as intriguing as a spy novel, involving an American biologist, a Swedish schoolteacher, intrepid Swedish students raising money to purchase about 15 acres of rainforest and the Monteverde Conservation League.
Over the years, the Kronas donated by those young Swedes and those 15 acres purchased have grown to almost 60,000 acres across 20 distinct properties in three Costa Rican Provinces. The expansion with sister organizations established in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and Japan, plus Many smaller groups, schools, and individuals -children and adults- from more than 44 countries contributing to the cause has made it the largest private reserve in Costa Rica!
Eso! Pura Vida!