Generation Earth, now in its 4th year, is an international African founded youth platform, of young green minds changing the way we live, learn and use the world’s resources. As an organisation @Gen_Earth strives to educate and empower children and the young people of our continent not only to be the change they seek in the world but to also be agents of change in order to #ChangeTheClimate. This year’s Summit is based on Food Security ahead of the critical climate change negotiations in Paris at COP21 taking place in December 2015.
Together with their partners their official banking partner Nedbank, accommodation and venue partner Tsogo Sun, the US Embassy and ITT (Innovating Tomorrow’s Technology) as they enabled the attendance of 350 teenagers to the Summit which inevitably builds a stronger generation of green leaders. These earth warriors who endeavour to develop sustainable minded communities, societies and countries that will actively engage and be part of the development of green cities of the future.
It allows for opportunities for critical discussions, open forum debate and interaction between leaders in the field of Water, Energy, Food Security, Green Cities, Waste Management and Climate Change. At the Summit several exhibitions were made available to the youth like Greenpeace, Acron Foundation, Earth Probiotics, PRASA, Feed-A-Child Foundation, Build-A-Bottle, Fry’s Vegetarian and Meat Free Monday.
Having launched in March 2011 as the world was descending on Durban shores for the UNFCCC COP 17 in December of that same year, Generation Earth carved its place in global climate discussions as it added its voice as the youth. These active youth called for environmental change, climate justice and swift and urgent action. This year they will be discussing Food and Agriculture and how do we as South Africans maintain a status of security without impacting negatively on the food, water, energy nexus of the country.
“Generation Earth Councils have been started around the country by the youth, for the youth and with over 87 councils established it cannot be done without the continued support from our venue and accommodation partner Tsogo Sun. Nedbank and the US Embassy have also set the foundation for us to reach young people of South Africa who are inspired to make a change in their community a reality. Not only have they helped to enable us to host Summits like this but Dialogues Days, workshops, community clean ups, school assemblies, Green Days at schools and universities where young people are being exposed to greener ways and behaviour.” explains founder of Generation Earth and United Nations Youth Mentor and Ambassador, Ella Bella.
“It has been, and continues to be, a great pleasure working with Generation Earth and contributing to their stalwart efforts to involve young people in sustainable green initiatives,” says Candy Tothill, Tsogo Sun’s exec responsible for corporate affairs. “This summit is enabling the future generations to see the possibilities of greener cities, renewable energy in the electric mix of the country, food gardens and roof-top greening schemes all form part of a sustainable future. Green issues are high on our corporate priorities and this work connects well with our CSI focus on youth development.”
“We have welcomed the support and ongoing endorsements from international bodies such as UNEP, TUNZA and the US Embassy; as well as local support from the South African Government, Minister of Environmental Affairs, Department of Basic Education, Lead SA and Brand SA including the MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services for the City of Johannesburg Councillor Matshidiso Mfikoe.” states Ella Bella.
“We are giving green issues a home, a space of relevance and as a network of green minds we are safe guarding and protecting our natural heritage for today and tomorrow!”
Working with partners and organizations that share in the ethos that speaks to our core values, morals and beliefs is a critical component in making things happen.
Let’s debate and solve the issues in the water, food and energy realm to help combat climate change, food insecurity and the development of Africa further than just the leadership of today, this allows us to engage our biggest commodity as a continent, OUR YOUTH!!
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