International Youth day 2023 – Building Meaningful Connections with Youth

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    Howdy Climate Action and Climate Justice champions 🙂

    As we mark International Youth day 2023, we acknowledge young people’s unprecedented mobilisation around the world showing the massive power they possess to realise climate action and climate justice. From youth on the front-line to youth in policy-making rooms, their message is clear: the older generation has failed, and it is the young who will pay in full — with their very futures, for a better climate.

    KujaLink brings together climate action and climate justice organisations/initiatives/movements and leaders behind them to build meaningful connections. We support having youth be part of these organisations/initiatives/movements as valuable contributors of climate action and climate justice.

    Hart’s Ladder of Participation (1984) is a useful tool for assessing the different levels of participation by youth in any climate action and climate justice organisation/initative/movement. Assess from the lowest to the highest ladder level :

    1) Manipulation.
    This step happens when adults use
    young people to support causes and
    pretend that the causes are inspired by
    young people. This rung of the ladder
    reflects adultism.

    2) Decoration.
    This step happens when young people
    are used to help or “bolster” a cause in
    a relatively indirect way, although adults
    do not pretend that the cause is inspired
    by young people. This rung of the ladder
    reflects adultism.

    3) Tokenism.
    This step occurs when young people
    appear to be given a voice, but in fact
    have little or no choice about what they
    do or how they participate. This rung of
    the ladder reflects adultism.

    4) Assigned but informed.
    This step is where young people are
    assigned a specific role and informed
    about how and why they are being
    involved. This rung of the ladder can be
    embodied by community youth boards.

    5) Consulted and informed.
    This step happens when young people
    give advice on projects or programs
    designed and run by adults. The young
    people are informed about how their
    input will be used and the out comes of
    the decisions made by adults. This rung
    of the ladder can be embodied by youth
    advisory councils or in climate-related workplaces.

    6) Adult-initiated, shared
    decisions with young people.
    This step occurs when projects or
    programs are initiated by adults but the
    decision-making is shared with young
    people. This rung of the ladder can
    be embodied by participatory action
    research.

    ” The world is home to 1.8 billion young people between the ages of 10 to 24 — the largest generation of youth in history. Young people are increasingly aware of the challenges and risks presented by the climate crisis and of the opportunity to achieve sustainable development brought by a solution to climate change”- Secretary-General of the United Nations,António Guterres

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