We’ve been following the #FridaysForFuture for a while and we’ve supported young people we know in the recent #climatestrike. This movement is giving us all the feels so we’re dedicating this post to the young woman that started this all, on her own, 16 year old Greta Thunberg. 💚💚💚
Greta is a young student from Sweden, who began skipping school on Fridays to protest outside the Swedish parliament - striking for the climate. She started on her own in August 2018 and then classmates started to join her, and then some.
It soon went global. On Friday 15th March 2019, more than 1.6 million young people were out in the streets in more than 125 countries around the world.
And they are set to continue.
She has skyrocketed to fame, not that she cares for it: “But I don’t mind it either as long as it is for a good cause.”
She spoke at the climate change conference in Poland last year and then again at the World Economic Forum. Here she delivered a haunting message. This 4 minute speech has brought us to tears and moved us irrevocably.
Here it is:
She cuts through the political waffle (or BS) of good intentions. Politicians have been lining up to take a scolding from Greta, like UN Secretary General, António Guterres and Emmanual Macron, President of France. And just recently she’s been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
In the wave of press coverage wanting to get their hands on this mini-powerhouse, we have learnt more about her past and what drives her. (Quotes are from the Guardian interview)
“I overthink. Some people can just let things go, but I can’t, especially if there’s something that worries me or makes me sad.”
She became depressed and her fears around climate change was a “was a significant factor.”
“I kept thinking about it and I just wondered if I am going to have a future. And I kept that to myself because I’m not very much of a talker, and that wasn’t healthy. I became very depressed and stopped going to school.”
In her story we find a part of ourselves in it,
“I have always been that girl in the back who doesn’t say anything. I thought I couldn’t make a difference because I was too small.”
Greta shares how encouraging her parents to absorb the climate science meant they changed their behaviour and gave Greta the impetus; “That’s when I kind of realised I could make a difference.” “And how I got out of that depression was that I thought: it is just a waste of time feeling this way because I can do so much good with my life.”
H2: We can’t help but admire her tenacity and commitment.
Her rallying call is “Systems change, not climate change.” And she’s hot on her climate science and practices her values as a vegan and non-flyer.
She intends to continue striking until the Swedish climate targets are in line with the Paris climate agreement. She juggles school and her role as spokesperson for a movement; “Of course, it takes a lot of energy. I don’t have much spare time. But I just keep reminding myself why I am doing this, and then I just try to do as much as I can.” Watt’s summarises it perfectly in his G2 interview, “The girl who once slipped into despair is now a beacon of hope.”
The second Global Strike for Future is taking place on 24th May 2019.
Put it in your diaries.
If you’re a grown up 350.org provide 5 was you can support local school strikes in your area, take a look
Find out more about Fridays For Future on their website
Follow Greta on Twitter: @gretathunberg
Watch her TED talk.