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A Shared Vision for Climate Action Unites Youth Leaders from Eastern and Southern Africa

ISEC FIRST EVER REGIONAL CONVENING FOR EASTERN AND SOUTHERN AFRICA


The International Student Environmental Coalition organized the Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Convening on 17th and 18th November 2023 in Nairobi, Kenya, on the theme "A Shared and Common Vision towards Climate Action" , that brought together representatives from Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi, Cameroon, and South Africa. ISEC has consistently led the charge in rallying young change makers globally to actively engage in volunteering and contribute to climate action. The organization has successfully spearheaded various projects worldwide, earning international recognition, including accreditation by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as a non-governmental organization (NGO) eligible to attend climate negotiations.


Why the convening? The climate change crisis and the need for intervention


That climate change crisis is real and that the repercussions are vast and affect humanity in numerous diverse ways, is indisputable. This underscores the need for young change makers to devise grassroots strategies for advancing climate action campaigns and crafting innovative solutions to alleviate the far-reaching consequences of climate change. Therefore, it is upon this contextual background convening was held as bold initiative to foster regional collaboration, advocating collectively for climate action, and facilitating the exchange of ideas regarding challenges, best practices, and success stories within individual countries.



 

Educate, Engage, Empower: The Pillars of the Convening.


The convening spanned two days of immersive learning. On the first day, discussions centered around climate justice, campaigns, and the essential contribution of grassroots actions to propel climate initiatives forward. Likewise, the subsequent day honed in on critical topics, including environmental education, civic engagement for climate action, and the significance of good governance for lasting impacts. Group sessions delved into tactics for educating and empowering individuals to advocate for equitable climate action, as well as identifying challenges and coming up with innovative solutions. The agenda featured insightful presentations covering various aspects of corporate governance, emphasizing the necessity of transparent leadership. Key topics included the significance of strategic planning, effective fundraising techniques for projects, SWOT analysis tailored for organizations, and the pivotal role of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). The collective enthusiasm of the participants sparked conversations that held the promise of creating a ripple effect extending far beyond the confines of the convention venue.

Further, the National Directors seized the opportunity to highlight both the challenges and accomplishments within their respective regions. It became evident that the influence of ISEC in Africa is significant, with notable initiatives such as the green project in Cameroon, the sustainable disposal of napkins in South Africa, civic education efforts in Tanzania and tree planting campaigns in Kenya, among others. ISEC is actively engaged in sustainable projects that target various sustainable development goals and has launched multiple climate action campaigns. A common challenge observed across all countries is the insufficient availability of funds.

Throughout the two-day event, a plethora of recommendations surfaced, emphasizing ISEC's dedication to translating discussions into meaningful actions. The organization is committed to implementing these recommendations, ensuring a more substantial and lasting impact, while also encouraging global youth involvement in volunteering to lead climate action and promote environmental democracy.

 

Conclusion: A Bold Step Towards a Greener Future


The Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Convening was not just a meeting of minds; it was a declaration of intent. ISEC's foray into Africa has set the stage for a burgeoning environmental movement led by the youth. As the momentum from Nairobi reverberates globally, the seeds of change have been sown, and ISEC stands ready to nurture them into a flourishing green revolution. The journey towards a sustainable future has just begun, and with ISEC at the helm, the possibilities are boundless.

 

Written By Murithi Antony: ISEC-Kenya Deputy National Director.amurithi326@gmail.com

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