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Earth Today | 2nd Youth Climate Action Expo next month

Published:Thursday | February 28, 2019 | 12:00 AM
A triumphant representative of York Castle High School (second right) collects the award for Champion School from Jamaica Climate Change Youth Council planning and policy development director Kirk Harris at the first stage of the expo last year.
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THE JAMAICA Climate Change Youth Council (JCCYC), along with other youth environmental groups, are targeting young people from high schools, community groups and colleges across Jamaica for their second signature event, the Youth Climate Action Expo next month.

According to JCCYC Director Eleanor Terrelonge, the event, which will be held at the Campion High School Auditorium on March 16, will this year focus on the recently introduced ban on single-use plastics and styrofoam, and encourage young people to use environmentally friendly alternatives.

“Our larger mandate is educating people about climate change and its effects, and a big part of that is the role that plastic pollution plays in making these effects worse,” noted Terrelonge.

The event, which is being held under the theme ‘Staying above the Tide: Jamaica after the plastic ban’, is aiming to attract hundreds of persons between the ages of 15-35 to the event and are especially targeting high-school students.

“We saw how much the high school students enjoyed the expo and how much they were able to learn from hands-on activities. So we want to continue this so that young people can become invested in the mitigation against the effects of climate change and be the fountain of information for their peers and their families,” noted Terrelonge.

The day’s activities will include tree-planting and upcycling exercises, panel discussions, as well as fun competitions and a scavenger hunt, geared towards providing informative activities for patrons.

The event will also have over 20 organisations from the public and private sectors, with booths that highlight different aspects of climate change.

According to Terrelonge, the displays from various organisations will give young people the opportunity to directly interact with brands and companies to learn more about climate resilience activities, and how they can be a part of them.

While this year’s event is being sponsored by entities such as the Grace-Kennedy Foundation and Environmental Solutions Ltd, the organisation is still seeking sponsorship from corporate Jamaica for the event, which will be held next month.

“We are working hard to make the event even better than last year, but we still need assistance to fund the expo. We hope corporate Jamaica will come on board for an initiative that will reach hundreds of young persons and spread the message about climate change and its effect on our lives in every way, daily,” added Terrelonge.