Let’s not sleep on the youth anymore.

Let’s think beyond the global climate strikes – which whilst you may not have been made aware, were galvanised by the actions of youths across the globe, not just Greta, but youths like @HelenaGualinga of the Indigenous Kichwa Sarayaku community in the Ecuadorian Amazon who took the Ecuadorian government to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in 2012 over the exploitation of sacred sites.

Or @LittleMissFlint – Mari Copeny is a 12-year-old native of Flint, Michigan who demanded a government response to the water crisis and helped to secure the declaration of a federal state of emergency, authorizing $100 million to fix the crisis.

Please do not sleep on our youth with a non-intersectional lens. They aren’t lazy and they have inherited a mess.

They need to know if your sustainability reaches beyond the lands of the USA and the UK? Is it able to recognise the motherland of Africa and the black lives there? Why all the selectivity?

A conversation about sustainability is not intersectional if it doesn’t include what is happening in Nigeria right now – especially as, once again, it looks like Africa is going to be a crucial pillar of holding up global manufacturing sooner than we know it – redistributing wealth and driving innovation.

The fundamentals of environmental sustainability have always been taught in, and centred in, Africa. The first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize, Wangari Maathai founded the Green Belt Movement in 1977, before I was even born, so let’s not only talk about carbon sequestration now…

With the Africa Continental Free Trade Area now in its operational phase, the continent is poised to take on more production, and will be the world’s largest free trade area by number of countries (as 54 African nations will constitute a single market for goods and services).

So before Africa becomes a manufacturing continent, before it is forced to replicate the fast fashion ‘fashioncides’ we have perpetuated here in the West, are we going to advocate for our Nigerian brothers and sisters there now? So that they can live, and be able to advocate for and determine their own futures?

Post Comments