Category Archives: UN

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation meets in Geneva

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation (L to R) Ms. Kleber, Ms. Rakoto and Mr. Guti

The core group of the LWF Youth delegation to the 18th Conference of Parties (COP 18) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) met last week (1st-4thOctober 2012) at the Ecumenical Center, in Geneva, with the outgoing LWF Youth Secretary Rev. Roger Schmidt. The core group consists of the three co-leaders of the expected 10 LWF Youth delegates to the COP18: Ms. Tsiri Rakoto from Madagascar, who is now doing her internship at the LWF Human Rights and International Relations Office, Ms. Raquel Kleber from Brazil  who is about to complete her undergraduate degree in International Relations and me, Mr. Warime Guti from Papua New Guinea one of the LWF Council member as a youth.

It was a challenging task to brainstorm ideas on how to prepare the delegation before  COP18, and to think about our strategies and perspectives during the conference and what what is generally expected to be the output by mid 2013.

The core group’s meeting this week brought together ideas and we strategically set up four main goals this delegation is aimed to achieve by mid 2013. The four goals are:

  1. By mid 2013 the delegation members have mobilized 300 young people from at least 8 member church to be active on Climate Justice in their respective context
  2. By mid 2013 the leadership of at least 8 member church have heard about the urgent and continuing importance of Climate Change
  3. By mid 2013 the delegation members have meaningfully contributed to civil society and ecumenical coalition
  4. By mid 2013 the delegation members have meaningfully accompanied and advocated in the UNFCCC process

In order to prepare the whole group before attending the meeting in Doha we have planned to facilitate two webinars. The two webinar will be co-facilitated by the three of us with Roger. Basically the webinar will look into deepening the understanding of the delegates about Climate Change in general, UNFCC processes, the COP meeting itself and explore more into understanding respective delegate’s local context of how Climate Change is dealt with in the local church and the country.

COP18 and the Meeting of the Parties of the Kyoto Protocol will be held from 26th November to the 7th December 2012 in Doha, Qatar. For the Conference we have we have strategies to facilitate our delegates to understand more into the process of discussion in the two major areas; MITIGATION and ADAPTATION. We are also expected to join ecumenical and civil society’s coalitions to advocate on specific issues that are in line with the values and visions of LWF. The time there in Doha will be hectic and we are also expecting last minute planning and strategies depending on what we see there on the ground.

And now after the meeting each one of the delegate is expected to develop a concept of what they will be doing back at their local churches in order for us to achieve our four main goals by mid 2013. As co-leaders we hope to facilitate with the rest of the delegates during the stay in Doha to develop ideas so delegates grasp what they can do effectively back at their respective context.

Advertisements

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation meets in Geneva

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation

LWF Youth Core Group for the UNFCCC COP18 delegation (L to R) Ms. Kleber, Ms. Rakoto and Mr. Guti

The core group of the LWF Youth delegation to the 18th Conference of Parties (COP 18) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) met last week (1st-4th October 2012) at the Ecumenical Center, in Geneva, with the outgoing LWF Youth Secretary Rev. Roger Schmidt. The core group consists of the three co-leaders of the expected 10 LWF Youth delegates to the COP18: Ms. Tsiri Rakoto from Madagascar, who is now doing her internship at the LWF Human Rights and International Relations Office, Ms. Raquel Kleber from Brazil who is about to complete her undergraduate degree in International Relations and me, Mr. Warime Guti from Papua New Guinea one of the LWF Council member as a youth.

It was a challenging task to brainstorm ideas on how to prepare the delegation before COP18, and to think about our strategies and perspectives during the conference and what what is generally expected to be the output by mid 2013.
The core group’s meeting this week brought together ideas and we strategically set up four main goals this delegation is aimed to achieve by mid 2013. The four goals are:

  1. By mid 2013 the delegation members have mobilized 300 young people from at least 8 member church to be active on Climate Justice in their respective context
  2. By mid 2013 the leadership of at least 8 member church have heard about the urgent and continuing importance of Climate Change
  3. By mid 2013 the delegation members have meaningfully contributed to civil society and ecumenical coalition
  4. By mid 2013 the delegation members have meaningfully accompanied and advocated in the UNFCCC process

In order to prepare the whole group before attending the meeting in Doha we have planned to facilitate two webinars. The two webinar will be co-facilitated by the three of us with Roger. Basically the webinar will look into deepening the understanding of the delegates about Climate Change in general, UNFCC processes, the COP meeting itself and explore more into understanding respective delegate’s local context of how Climate Change is dealt with in the local church and the country.

COP18 and the Meeting of the Parties of the Kyoto Protocol will be held from 26th November to the 7th December 2012 in Doha, Qatar. For the Conference we have we have strategies to facilitate our delegates to understand more into the process of discussion in the two major areas; MITIGATION and ADAPTATION. We are also expected to join ecumenical and civil society’s coalitions to advocate on specific issues that are in line with the values and visions of LWF. The time there in Doha will be hectic and we are also expecting last minute planning and strategies depending on what we see there on the ground.

And now after the meeting each one of the delegate is expected to develop a concept of what they will be doing back at their local churches in order for us to achieve our four main goals by mid 2013. As co-leaders we hope to facilitate with the rest of the delegates during the stay in Doha to develop ideas so delegates grasp what they can do effectively back at their respective context.

Youth for Eco-Justice: Kaitlin Bardswich

The World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation co-organize Youth for Eco-Justice, starting parallel to the UN Climate Change Summit in Durban, South Africa, at the end of November. In a series of blog posts, the participants are introducing themselves

Name:Kaitlin Bardswich
Age: 25
Function: Program Assistant for 2 program areas at The United Church of Canada – Poverty, Wealth & Ecological Justice, and Public Witness
Country of Origin: Canada
Church of Origin: Raised Roman Catholic; now a member of The United Church of Canada

What is really important for your life?
Living a just life, surrounded by family and friends.
What are your wishes for the negotiations on Climate Change in Durban?
I hope that the negotiations don’t just result in words, but also in action.
What would you like to do so that your church/country becomes more environmentally just?
I would like to raise awareness about eco-justice and make people in Canada aware that it is the impoverished who are most affected by environmental injustice, in the global South as well as in our own backyard. And I think a major thing is to instill a sense of empathy and yearning for justice in people, by bringing the personal stories from Durban back to my church and community.

Youth for Eco-Justice: Jessica Morthorpe

The World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation co-organize Youth for Eco-Justice, starting parallel to the UN Climate Change Summit in Durban, South Africa, at the end of November. In a series of blog posts, the participants are introducing themselves

Name: Jessica Morthorpe
Age: 24
Country of origin: Australia
Church of origin: Kippax Uniting Church

The most important things in my life are my faith and my passion for the environment and conservation. If I can help just one of God’s precious species avoid extinction before I die then I think I will have served some useful purpose.

I wish that in Durban the world would take decisive action to fight climate change and to support the people and other life that are going to suffer because of it even if we act now. I wish that the leaders present would have the courage to stand up and take leadership and to do what is right, even if it isn’t easy or popular.

I would like to continue to work with the wonderful churches of my country through the Five Leaf Eco-Awards to raise awareness of the need for eco-justice and to take personal and corporate responsibility for doing something about it. I would also like to encourage them to become more involved, not just in sustainability, but also in protecting God’s creatures and those people who suffer injustice due to the way we treat God’s creation.

Youth for Eco-Justice: Marcelo D. Leites

The World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation co-organize Youth for Eco-Justice, starting parallel to the UN Climate Change Summit in Durban, South Africa, at the end of November. In a series of blog posts, the participants are introducing themselves

Name: Marcelo D. Leites
Age: 26 years old
Function: Regional Secretary of the World Student Christian Federation in Latin American and the Caribbean – WSCF Global Water campaign and Eco Justice programme Chair
Church of Origin: Brethern – independent
Country of Origin: Montevideo, Uruguay, living in Buenos Aires, Argentina

What is really important for your life?

There are several important things in my life, sometimes we need to have priorities about what really  is important. I think that one of these very important things is the possibility to improve solidarity, approaches to work justice and peace between us and the creation. It is also to improve ourselves in relation with our brothers and sisters – to be new Men and Women each day, analyzing power and struggling against it.

 What are your wishes for the negotiations on Climate Change in Durban?

Civil Society Organizations have a lot of expectations around each COP. After several failures, a lot of Civil Society Organizations, even Churches and Ecumenical Organizations are advocating to the leaders of the world to make changes and establish justice and global agreements. The paradigm of justice agreements is not a part of the common sense of the parties. There are several interests around the possible changes and the recognition of inequities between countries: power and economical interests. I hope for the better possible understanding between the parties, and above all the ecumenical and society family an advocacy actor, so that we make a difference there!

What would you like to do so that your church/country becomes more environmentally just?

The World Student Christian Federation in Latin America and the Caribbean is launching a regional project on Eco-Justice and Water. We are working with 11 countries on the region in a mid-term programme that includes youth environment and justice training, advocacy training, advocacy work in communitarian places (national and regional levels) showing how the youth and students from Grassroots Organization, the Student Christian Movement (from WSCF) and the youth from churches can make a difference, work on issues related to Eco-justice around the region, and work on this issue from a popular reading of the Bible.

In our first step we are launching an itinerary photo exhibition about the conflict between communities around water issues. We will show this photo exhibition in at least seven countries of the region and in two important international events: The Conference on Sustainable Development of the UN in Río de Janeiro, Brazil, RIO+20 and in the Latin-American Water Tribunal, in Buenos Aires Argentina.

This training and the participation in the COP meeting is very helpful for our own commitment in Latin America and the Caribbean. We want to engage young people and students on this matter, to get them learn from this global experience around the  Student Christian Movement through our WSCF WATER campaign.

Youth for Eco-Justice: Stanislau Paulau

The World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation co-organize Youth for Eco-Justice, starting parallel to the UN Climate Change Summit in Durban, South Africa, at the end of November. In a series of blog posts, the participants are introducing themselves

Name: Stanislau Paulau
Age: 22
Function: Student of M.A. Programme “Intercultural Theology”
Country of Origin: Belarus
Church of Origin: Belarusian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate

What is really important for your life?
For me it is important always to go further in my relationships with
creation, people and God and to discover something new in this ongoing
process. I think that my feeling of life was precisely put into the
words by St. Gregory of Nyssa: “The end of each discovery becomes the
starting point for the discovery of something higher, and the ascent
continues. Thus our ascent is unending. We go from the beginning to
beginning by way of beginnings without end.” So, I appreciate to be a
beginner.

What are your wishes for the negotiations on Climate Change in Durban?
In Durban we will have a unique space for sharing and learning and I
do hope that we will manage to engage into a fruitful dialogue with
each other. In my opinion it is very important to bring our own
perspectives on the issue of Eco-Justice into discussion and enrich
each other by this way. I wish that we as Christian youth from all
over the world will build a common vision for the future of our common
Earth.

What would you like to do so that your church/country becomes more environmentally just?
I think that the Church should more intensively stress that everything
that lives and breathes is sacred and beautiful in the eyes of God and
do everything to protect this beauty. And that should start from the
parish/youth or bible group level. I would be happy to be able to
contribute on the place where I live to this understanding that the
whole world is a sacrament. Such an understanding of the world could
become a source of environmental justice.

Youth for Eco-Justice: Caroline Foster

The World Council of Churches and the Lutheran World Federation co-organize Youth for Eco-Justice, starting parallel to the UN Climate Change Summit in Durban, South Africa, at the end of November. In a series of blog posts, the participants are introducing themselves

Name: Caroline Foster
Age: 28
Country of Origin: Canada

Church of Origin: Works as the network and young adult coordinator for KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives.  KAIROS unites 11 churches and faith-based organizations in faithful action for justice and peace.  Attends a Presbyterian church in Toronto.

What is really important in my life:

Family, friends, and working for a more just and sustainable community locally and globally.  I find that the more I learn about the world, the more work I see that needs to be done to ensure that this planet can sustain future generations.  As a person whose daily life is not directly adversely affected by climate change, I feel a deep sense of responsibility for the impact my country has had on marginalized communities at home and abroad.

What my wishes are for the negotiations on Climate Change in Durban: It is my hope that the world leaders will commit to a long-term sustainable plan to reduce global warming.  I hope that the leaders from the Global North will commit to dealing with the ecological debt owed to the majority world and that a plan that incorporates the voices and perspectives of the Global South would be put into action.

What would you like to do so that your church/country becomes more environmentally just?

The experience and learning that I hope to gain from the programme will assist me in facilitating workshops and planning events related to eco-justice.  KAIROS has two explicit foci; human rights and ecological justice. KAIROS has recently identified working with and engaging youth in those program areas as a priority and a major component of the strategic plan for the coming years.  Over the next year, we are looking at hosting youth ecumenical gatherings across Canada.  I believe that my experience at Youth for Eco-Justice will be useful in helping to shape these gatherings. I believe that as a young person I have the opportunity and responsibility to work towards a more sustainable and environmentally just future for my children and all of God’s creation.