Civil society organizations call for the inclusion of children and adolescents in the discussion of public policies to mitigate climate change

Civil society organizations call for the inclusion of children and adolescents in the discussion of public policies to mitigate climate change
Civil society organizations call for the inclusion of children and adolescents in the discussion of public policies to mitigate climate change

National

They insist that spaces for participation must be opened for the most vulnerable population in the construction of the National Plan for Adaptation to Climate Change

Caracas./Representatives of 15 Venezuelan civil society organizations participated in a first consultation meeting convened by the NGO Clima21 to discuss the differentiated impact of climate change on children and adolescents and the need to take them into account when designing public policies to protect the population against the effects of climate change (CC).

CC is the main threat to human societies. For this reason, leaders such as Antonio Guterres (UN Secretary General), Pope Francis and Volker Türk (UN High Commissioner for Human Rights) have warned about the danger of ignoring it and not acting urgently to protect the most vulnerable groups.

Biologist and environmental human rights activist Alejandro Álvarez, general coordinator of the NGO Clima21, pointed out that the importance of this meeting was that children and adolescents are one of the most vulnerable groups to the effects of CC.

He also stated that the national government has a politicized approach to CC and ignores its international obligations regarding CC.

For this reason, there has been little significant progress in climate action in the country, which directly and indirectly hinders the enjoyment of human rights by children and adolescents (NNA) in vulnerable situations.

“For this reason, climate action must be placed at the centre of the political debate, social capacities must be generated in civil society for the defence of human rights in the context of CC, and children must be given the right to participate in discussions and decision-making, according to their capacities, interests and conditions,” he added.

Hence the initiative ““The Path to Climate Resilience” The project carried out by Clima21 seeks to define urgent actions for the protection of Venezuelan children and adolescents in the face of climate change.

Aldeas Infantiles, Cecodap, Asoviluz, Hogar Virgen de los Dolores, UCV, Luz y Vida, Gannan, Red de Casas Don Bosco, Redhnna, Cendif (Universidad Metropolitana), Fe y Alegría, Zona de Descarga, Oportunidad AC, Fenasopadres and Fundamad were among the organisations invited to this first working table, from which emerged a first route to make enforceability and incidence related to the mitigation and impact of CC and its effects on children and adolescents.

The organizations agreed to begin working in alliances and promoted the fact that information and data related to CC should be democratized. They also raised initiatives that should be undertaken by the State and by organized civil society.

They called for control of mining and deforestation; environmental education for prevention and climate resilience; creation of risk management in the face of natural disasters; and the resumption of international alliances and commitments to develop actions against CC.

In presenting the National Plan for Adaptation to Climate Change, they asked for encouraging the participation of children and adolescents as agents of change; strengthening the capacities of children and adolescents and young people for climate resilience; updating or reinforcing the school curriculum; creating a fund to assist victims, among others.

These meetings will continue in the coming days, to listen to the voices of women and indigenous and LGBTIQ+ communities.

Photo: reference / Visual Metaphors

 
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