Working towards a more environmentally sustainable future – Global Youth Summit 2018

Student delegation at the Global Youth Summit

Hon. Sarifa Younes, President of the International Academy of Marawi

Students collaborating at the Global Youth Summit

Globally, we have been struggling with a rapidly changing climate and environmental impact for many decades, the Global Youth Summit raises awareness of this.

We are raising the leaders and decision-makers of the next generation. Soon they are the people who will run our countries and make decisions that will impact our environment and our future.”

— President of International Academy of Marawi, Sarifa Younes

NATIONAL LIBRARY PLAZA, CITY, SINGAPORE, June 26, 2018 / — On a Global scale, we have been struggling with a rapidly changing climate and environment for many decades now, and the results of our reckless and complacent choices are alarming.

Melting polar-caps, plastic overrunning our oceans and pollution invading our air are just some of the concerns we are currently facing. Furthermore, according to the World Bank Group published in 2016, air pollution is now the fourth leading risk-factor to premature deaths globally – ranking higher than alcohol and drugs.

Authorities, researchers, newspapers and even your local council preach for change – a cleaner, more sustainable world to live in now and for the future. And, for the most part, we have taken remarkable steps to undo and prevent negative environmental impacts.  Yet, one of the greatest challenges lies in ensuring that the next generations are willing to take on social responsibility and step up to the plate to help save the planet. However, this is easier said than done.

According to the President of the International Academy of Marawi (IAM), Sarifa Younes, encouraging young people to get involved in climate change and the environment should be an integral part of the education and learning in primary, secondary and senior schooling.

“We are raising the leaders and decision-makers of the next generation. In just a few short years they are going to be the people who are running our countries and making decisions that will impact our environment in dramatic ways. Even just in their everyday actions,” Mrs Younes says.

“Therefore, it’s up to educators, in partnership with parents, to help children and young people understand the role they play in climate change and sustainable development for the future,” Younes adds.

As part of her initiative to get her students involved, Mrs Younes will be taking five students as well as teachers Farhannah Bayabao Sultan and Hanan Sata to Singapore to participate in the Action for Earth – Global Youth Summit 2018 (GYS), now in its fourth year.

The Youth-led summit is a 3-day annual conference that attracts hundreds of students from all over the world, with the aim of sharing about initiatives, projects – networking and engaging with other like-minded, forward-thinking young people about sustainable climate change solutions. The summit includes boot-camp style learning, challenges and an awards celebration for the most innovative projects – including cash prizes for the top three winners of Junior and Senior Categories.  

President of the Hemisphere Foundation, and founder of the Global Youth Summit, Ms Ann Phua, says, “The Global Youth Summit was created for our youth to learn and advocate actions for the earth. We want to inspire young people to never give up and to take action into their own hands.”

“It’s about self-empowerment and for the students to take what they learn at the Global Youth Summit back into their own communities. We can only continue to inspire them, so they may inspire others”, Ms Phua says.

Since its inception in 2014, the GYS has had over 282,000 students from 242 schools in 15 countries participate.

However, with the potential reach and scope of participants, Mrs Younes believes more schools should be engaging and putting their hand up to participate.

“I understand that it can be hard to get young people, especially children, excited about the environment. But, from my experience, the earlier you expose children to the topic, the easier it is to engage and inspire them to get involved and support the cause,” Mrs Younes says.

“I feel privileged to have been selected to attend the Global Youth Summit,” said 17-year-old Marziya Channa Imam Abinal, who attends grade 10 at IAM Academy. “I can’t wait to take our project there and to learn from all those other teachers and students at the summit.”

Grade seven IAM student, 15-year-old Ziyaadh Capal Ampaso, said, “It will be amazing to see what other schools in other countries are doing for the environment. I look forward to learning a lot at the summit and to bringing it all back home to our academy to share.”

The International Academy of Marawi (IAM) is committed to open global doors for it’s students and to make a positive impact on the environment across many generations to come. This is the third year the international academy participates in the event.

“We spend much time teaching children to engage with their peers in a positive and encouraging way – why can’t we implement this theory to how we engage with the environment,” Mrs Younes adds.

With the Global Youth Summit set to kick-off on June 28 – 30, there is still time to get involved. For more information, visit the Actions for Earth website.

Erik Ralf Bigalk
Smart Solutions
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Source: EIN Presswire