Addressing climate emergency, Save the Children in Bangladesh has launched the “Red Alert” campaign aiming to enhance the voice of children and youth at the forefront of policy and decision-making process to respond to climatic catastrophes in Bangladesh, Asia region and the world.
By a webinar titled “Children and Youth in Climate Change and Post Covid-19 Recovery Plans” was held Tuesday to announce the initiative marking World Nature Conservation Day.
Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change’s Standing Committee President Saber Hossain Chowdhury MP was the chief guest while Dr Fazle Rabbi Sadeque Ahmed, director (environment and climate change), PKSF, Farah Kabir, Country Director, ActionAid Bangladesh and two young speakers, Hira Moni and Sohanur Rahman of YouthNet for Climate Justice spoke at this launching ceremony. Save the Children in Bangladesh Country Director Onno van Manen was given welcome remarks and Director-Programme Development and Quality Reefat Bin Sattar moderated the session.
Saber Hossain Chowdhury MP, Chair of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change’s Standing Committee President said, “Climate change is not only a development challenge; it is also an existential threat. To confront the threat, the new and young generation has to take the lead.”
He mentioned that the draft eighth five years plan has already focused on the green economy, green deal, circular economy, and converting to renewable energy completely by 2050.
He also highlighted the interrelation of Covid-19 and climate change for green recovery, saying “Covid-19 response has to be packaged with green recovery to ensure maximum utilization of our resources.”
Children representative Hira Moni, Former President, Green Club said, “We want to know how climate financing is streaming and mobilized.”
Save the Children, Bangladesh Country Director Onno van Manen highlighted that the voice of the young generation is equally important as the experienced ones in these sectors.
“It will take the voice and energy of the next generation and the willingness of the older generation to listen and take action to address the climate emergency,” he said.
Young climate activist Sohanur Rahman, Coordinator, YouthNet for Climate Justice said, “We as youth don’t just want to talk about the problem, but also want to be part of the solution. We need investment in youth leadership and space for our engagement.” He asserts “We have to prepare with climate knowledge and learning to speak as climate champions. We want to be capable leaders to make Bangladesh a model for climate adaptation.”
Focusing on the necessity for investment in youth, Farah Kabir, Country Director, ActionAid Bangladesh said: “We don’t always have to look to the north for solutions. We can foster our youth’s innovation and research with proper support.”
Save the Children in Bangladesh is working to address the impacts of climate change and climate-induced risks and disasters in Bangladesh since 2012. The primary area of their works has been to increase the focus on community-based adaptation and child-centered approaches through climate ﬁnance in Bangladesh.
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