Climate organisations encourage young people to apply to participate in a climate boot-camp aimed at fast-tracking young people who want to have a meaningful voice in climate action.
Recently, the Youth Climate Champions (YCC) programme was launched at an event in Braamfontein, which saw young and old come together to talk about how to take youth action beyond tokenism.
The YCC launch included panellists such as Crispian Olver, the executive director of the Presidential Climate Commission; Mitchelle Mhaka, the programmes coordinator for the African Climate Alliance; WWF South Africa regional plastics policy coordinator, Zaynab Sadan; and Bulelwa Makalime-Ngewana, executive director of the Open Society Foundations.
The YCC was launched under the banner of the Climate Ambition to Accountability Project (CAAP), a partnership between WWF South Africa, the South African Climate Action Network and the Institute for Economic Justice, which is co-funded by the European Union.
The CAAP said the programme aims to empower, support and enable collaboration between young people and youth organisations interested in climate change. According to the partners, planned activities include climate boot-camps, the establishment of a YCC steering committee, a podcast series, social media activist training, internships and training modules.
“The rationale behind the YCC programme is that young people in South Africa operate at the margins of climate policy processes and engagement has been largely fragmented. Because of this, the youth have limited access to resources, knowledge, expertise and opportunities to get involved,” the partners said.
They added that as part of the project’s activities, the YCC programme will enable and train youth leaders, particularly those from disadvantaged communities to ensure more meaningful youth engagement in climate action and policy processes.
Among the upcoming activities in the YCC programme is a boot-camp, which will see 25 young people come together under the YCC banner to learn how to take meaningful action.
The CAAP said the boot-camp will kick off with a virtual preparatory event from September 26 to 30, followed by a five-day, in-person event in Gauteng from October 3 to 7.
The CAAP said the programme will include an intensive session on climate change, its impacts, and how this affects young people, interspersed with fun activities and outings.
The partners added that participation is open to anyone between the ages of 18 to 30-years old with an interest in climate action.