How did Swedish student Greta Thunberg get the attention of students, governments and citizens around the world? She skipped school! As a Principal, this is about the last thing I want students to do, but I have to admit that it was an effective way to draw attention to the climate crisis.
Climate action rallies have been taking place around the world; students, who are too young to vote, are doing their best to use their voices to draw attention to the climate crisis. They feel engaged and inspired by Greta and by the young people around the world who are voicing their concern for the environment and desire for a sustainable future.
Students are engaged and empowered by the knowledge that they can protect and restore our planet, and many Greenwood students have expressed an interest in attending the rally at Queen’s Park on Friday. A reminder that, as per my recent message in Week @ A Glance, students planning to attend the rally will need parent permission.
Eco-anxiety and worries about the environment are affecting youth mental health; however, there is a great deal of hope. There is a lot that students can do rather than, or in addition to, attending the rally, and each of these changes makes a difference. Last year, our Environmental Club highlighted a number of sustainable suggestions, including:
Choosing reusable cups and straws
Reducing meat consumption
Walking, car-pooling or taking transit
Adjusting thermostats to reduce household energy use
Avoiding single-use plastic items, such as plastic bags
I am amazed by Greta Thunberg and what she has been able to accomplish in such a short time. After seeing the passion and determination of young people, including Greenwood students, for preserving our planet, I remain hopeful and optimistic about the environment and our future.
“In a world of more than seven billion people, each of us is a drop in the bucket. But with enough drops, we can fill any bucket.” -- David Suzuki