21.02.2020

FTA and the Youth Climate Commission 2020 - Wandsworth

The Youth Climate Commission event, held at Tooting Hub, 14th February 2020, was organised by the Wandsworth Youth Council with support from Participation People. The goals of the day were to for all participants to listen to each other, explore how to reduce their impact on climate change, and work together to discuss solutions.

The day started with presentations from pupils representing seven borough schools, discussing what they were doing to tackle climate change. This included using more sustainable modes of transport like walking or cycling to school. The commission also heard about school tree planting programmes and how they were doing their best to recycle everything and reduce single use plastic.

Local community groups and businesses, including Fashion-Enter and the Fashion Technology Academy then spoke about their sustainability initiatives. Deeply rooted into the company ethos Fashion-Enter incorporates ethical and sustainable practises to ensure the minimum of waste and environmental impact. Other community organisations in attendance were anti-food waste group ‘Waste Not Want Not’; clothing swap group ‘Swop It Up’; Wandsworth Oasis charity shop and Crew Energy.

“As a table facilitator at this event it was inspiring to see how passionate and engaged the school children were on the topic of sustainability. We talked to the children about ethical and sustainable fashion manufacturing and the importance of the next generation of designers and makers fully embracing sustainable practises across the entire garment life cycle. We also touched on choice as fashion consumers and the importance of selecting quality and garments that are made to last.” - JH

School representatives then spit up, joining the community groups to take part in workshops where they learnt how to reduce, reuse, refuse and upcycle. The final part of the day saw the young people presenting to a ‘Dragons Den’ panel about their ideas to tackle climate change. The panellists were Cllr Ravi Govindia, leader of Wandsworth Council, Andrew Hagger, climate change policy manager, Paul Chadwick, director of community services and environment, Toby Costin from Crew Energy and Zaqiya Cajee, CEO of Swop it Up.

The Youth Council also spoke about their plans to ‘youthify’ the council’s Climate Change Action Plan. They spoke about how it was great that the council had an action plan, but it was important that it was presented in a way that young people could understand.

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