Global Activators is planning an innovative youth engagement program that will involve several thousand people in advancing solutions to the challenges facing the global oceans and the coast of British Columbia.
Prepare for a youthquake
On April 19th — 21st, 2019 (the Easter long weekend), hundreds of outstanding young people aged 14-17 from across British Columbia will gather in Vancouver the inaugural Youth Summit for Living Oceans. This event will combine elements of a jamboree, ocean conservation conference, and street parade. The Youth Summit will spotlight both the major threats to the global oceans (e.g. climate change, over-fishing, and plastic pollution) and the challenges facing the Pacific coast of Canada (including the impacts of potential oil spills and the urgent need to protect threatened wild salmon and orcas). The emphasis will be on the many solutions to these challenges.
The two and a half day event will be a stimulating mix of ocean conservation film screenings, slam poetry and live music from young performers, and keynote presentations from ocean scientists, conservationists, First Nations leaders, entrepreneurs, and senior representatives of government. There will also be dozens of small group workshops and discussion groups on a range of topics related to protecting the oceans. However, the focus in on facilitating young people to take action. Participants will find out about the key campaign goals of several ocean conservation organizations, and they will learn how to engage people in their communities and schools in those campaigns (see below).
The finale of the Youth Summit will be an exciting 5km Living Oceans Parade through the streets of downtown Vancouver, which will showcase the young participants wearing wild salmon and other sea creature costumes or props which they will have created in crafting workshops the previous day. This parade is also a pledge walk. However, it is a pledge walk to generate changemaker actions not funds. In the weeks before attending the Youth Summit, the participants will sign up at least ten people in their spheres of influence (family, friends, neighbours, classmates, etc). These supporters will each agree to contact their elected representatives to share their own views on protecting our living oceans (e.g. protecting wild salmon stocks, phasing out single use plastic, etc). Each Youth Summit participant will be representing those supporters during the Living Oceans Parade.
In the week after the Youth Summit, the participants will have a conversation with each of their supporters — telling them about the major challenges facing the oceans and the BC coast and what can be done to turn the tide from depletion and destruction to restoration and protection.
Furthermore, in the months following the Youth Summit, the participants will work with their friends to organize their own Living Oceans Parade in their community — to take place on World Oceans Day, Saturday, June 8th, 2019. These colourful parades across British Columbia will be a positive way for thousands of people to step up to show their support for the protection of our coastline and the global oceans, and for swift action across society to prevent dangerous climate change.
Please join us in helping to make the first Youth Summit for Living Oceans a success.