Guest blog by Glorya Wornum (18) and Ayo Olumuyiwa (17), two Boston students who attended the People’s Climate March last Sunday
Last Sunday, September 21st, 400,000 people flocked to the streets of New York City for the People’s Climate March- the largest march in history around the issue of climate change. The Boston Student Advisory Council and other Boston youth woke up at 5:00 AM to get on a bus to New York to join this important march. We walked over 20 blocks through the heat with tens of thousands of other marchers.
(BSAC students Deross Jordan (18), Esmeralda Sosa, Luis Martinez, Glorya Wornum and Marcus Wade (17))
We were there to be a part of history and make a change in the way people see the climate movement. We believe that young people must be at the forefront of this movement, just as we led this march we must also continue to be leaders in finding solutions for climate change. We felt honored to have been part of the march. In the future people might ask “where were you when the biggest climate march in history brought together people from all over the world?” And we can say: “I was there, I was sweating, and I was yelling”.
(BSAC alum Steve Marcelin and adult ally Ken Sazama)
The event was in reaction to a UN meeting on climate change, and was an opportunity for people to demand that these world leaders and business executives start listening to the people and communities that climate change affects the most. It was a call for climate justice: for real action to be taken on climate change- an issue that affects young people, communities of color and low-income people the most.
(BSAC student Ayo Olumuyiwa marching.)
The march was a chance to highlight this idea that the people affected by climate change have the best ideas for how to fix it. If you are in a neighborhood that has a coal plant YOU are the one that probably has the best ideas about how to get rid of the plant, how to clean up the neighborhood after years of pollution, and how to bring cleaner jobs and energy to your town. We ourselves know about many potential solutions for the climate crisis as it affects Boston: investing renewable energy, divesting from fossil fuels, coming up with emergency disaster-preparedness in the event of storms, and growing our own food.
(BSAC staff member Teena-Marie Johnson and BSAC student Savina Tapia before the march.)
Seeing that amount of people at the march we realized climate change is no longer something that can be hidden, you can’t keep the jack in the box- people around the world are aware it’s happening. It’s important for young people especially to be conscious of climate change because it threatens their future the most. Older people may not have the time to change themselves, but young people still have time to change their communities and the world.
(BSAC students Ayo Olumuyiwa (18), Glorya Wornum (17), and Marcus Wade (17) join the march.)