Join YMCA at COP26 for an exclusive film premiere of youth-led climate change solutions

Press Release
Thursday 4 November 2021

The world’s oldest and largest youth organization will showcase six youth-led solutions on climate action from across the globe, inside the Green Zone on Friday November 12.

Specially commissioned for COP26, the global film premiere of Creating Youth-Led Solutions will be held at the Glasgow IMAX cinema at 15:30 (GMT, UK time), and hosted by YMCA Scotland. The documentary-style film tells the story of how young leaders on each continent are innovating local solutions to the climate crisis, and will be followed by a panel discussion with YMCA Young Ambassadors Rodrigo Puntriano Mendoza (Peru), Rebecca Nkunde (Zambia), Diana Lopera (Hawaii, USA) and Ylli Alija (Kosovo) from the film.

Carlos Sanvee, Secretary General of World YMCA, said: “The world is falling short on its commitments to people and planet, inaction is driving injustice, and complacency is perpetuating marginalisation. But – the world’s young people have the answers, the tenacity, and the drive to implement solutions.

“They aren’t just changemakers-in-waiting, they are leading the charge right at this very moment in every corner of the world, driving innovation, dialogue and education around the world’s biggest challenge – the climate crisis.”

Two years ago, YMCA launched the Youth-Led Solutions initiative to mentor, train and support the development of young people’s solutions to issues of climate justice, employment and mental health. In October 2020, it held its first Summit on climate action, subsequently funding 35 new youth-led initiatives around the world. Friday’s very special film premiere will highlight just some of these projects, their journey so far, and the work that young people are doing to be ambassadors for climate action.

So, join YMCA for a journey across the world as we hear from young people installing vermicomposting and tackling electronic waste in Hawaii; see their work in Peru where addressing poor sanitation and inorganic waste has helped to address income inequity; witness a cross-cultural collaboration between young people in Albay, Philippines and Michigan (USA) to train a new generation of eco-leaders; learn about community-led reforestation in the Western Balkan forests of Kosovo; watch as young people create micro-green spaces across Ramallah, Palestine; and discover how curriculum-based climate art projects are utilising up-cycled waste in schools in Zambia.

Kerry Reilly, CEO of YMCA Scotland, said: “YMCA as a global movement is deepening its commitment to young people leading global change, and we at YMCA Scotland are excited and honoured to be hosting the premier and discussion panel for this innovative film at such a pivotal time and place.

“YMCA’s Youth-Led Solutions Initiative is elevating young leaders to tackle the issues head-on. It’s connecting like-minded individuals from around the world to build the skills and solutions necessary to take action in their communities, and this film is a fitting example of just that. Listen to their stories and be inspired.”

In addition to YMCA’s film premiere, more than 20 young delegates from Canada, England & Wales, Germany, Ghana, Ireland, Kosovo, Norway, Palestine, Peru, Romania, Scotland, USA and Zambia and will be taking part in debates inside the COP26 Blue Zone. Key figures from YMCA’s global leadership will also be joining a programme of COP26 side-events, including a special collaboration with One Young World and Extreme International.

The film screening is currently sold out, but sign up now to be reminded when the livestream starts here.

For more information on YMCA’s involvement at COP26, including access to events and daily blogs from delegates, please visit: https://www.ymca.int/cop26/ or follow @WorldYMCA / #YMCACOP26. 

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For more information and a list of spokespeople, or to make interview requests, please contact Aimee Reilly on aimee.reilly@ymca.org.uk / +44 7863 620084.