Climate change is now occurring at rates much faster than anticipated and its effects can be widely witnessed throughout Europe and the globe. The environmental sustainability threat puts at-risk not only human lives but also the economy, education and biodiversity. This issue needs to be tackled by people of all ages and backgrounds. Especially younger generations need to take action, as they will be affected by it the most. Despite the increased interest and mobilisation amongst young people towards the action against climate change there are still existing barriers in engaging young people from minority backgrounds in activities related to the environment, fair trade, and the related SDGs.
Therefore, FEMYSO, through its network of 32 youth and student member organisations from 20 European countries aims to raise awareness, engage, train and empower an international group of young people, of minority backgrounds, with diverse experiences to come together and become environmental advocates by giving them the tools to actively take part in the political process and debate. This will aid to creating a network of passionate young environmental activists supporting each other to mobilise their organisations and communities. By leading sustainable projects, the participants will not only promote environmental actions, but they will also enrich the young generations’ understanding of the world they are living in, while at the same time promote human rights such as justice and equality.
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This project aligns with the Council of Europe’s Priority 2 ‘Youth participation and Youth Work’ and will be implemented through various means as trainings, workshops and case studies. Human rights in regards to sustainable development will be accentuated throughout the programme in order to provide a holistic understanding of the European environmental context and challenges, and the keys to prioritise and classify such environmental issues. The human rights that will be addressed include environmental protection, social inclusion, economic growth and undoubtedly environmental rights. This programme is dedicated to underline the importance of supporting young people from minority backgrounds to become advocates and to fully exercise their rights ensuring inclusive youth participation and work. Another aspect of the programme will be enabling a comprehensive understanding of the European climate affairs, institutions and framework, which will facilitate the participant’s engagement with both their local and international public authorities. By enabling young people to advocate for climate action, FEMYSO is actively contributing to the creation of inclusive and peaceful societies, as prioritised by the Council of Europe (Priority 3).