2020 has started with dramatic events of massive bushfires in Australia, huge losses of wildlife, plants and material damages. Although climate change is not alone to be blamed for the fires, experts point out that extreme weather conditions as the drought in Australia are linked to the current anthropogenic climate change. Yet little action is being taken to change the climate policy both at national and global levels.
The recent failure of the climate summit in Madrid further shows the difficulties in reaching overall political agreements on how to solve the current climate crisis. At the same time, young people all over the world keep protesting every Friday through the global Fridays for Future movement, demanding that leaders show responsibility and take action. This movement points to the fact that changes may be reached from the bottom up and that youth activism, active engagement and volunteering can play a key role in the urgently needed transition.
Green is the future: Volunteering for the Environment, the 51st issue of the ICYE Federation Newsletter focuses on environmental sustainability and shows how young volunteers relate to the environment. In Volunteers Voices, we are pleased to present articles by seven volunteers who describe how the environment has played a key role in their voluntary service, illustrating that volunteering can bring about change, a change for individuals and for the nature. As the Polish volunteer in Ecuador states, “transformation is possible when we are all part of the equation”. All of them feel a sense of obligation and make an urgent call to action for our future.
In this connection, the last ICYE General Assembly held in Vietnam in November 2019 adopted a motion to develop an ICYE Green policy and set up a Green Fund to offset CO2 emissions of all flights and travels before 2021.
ICYE News features a short article on the cooperation between the board of managers of ICYE Denmark and ICYE Finland, and the 31st ICYE General Assembly, which was held in Hoi An in Vietnam in November 2019 and culminated with the 70th Anniversary celebration of the ICYE Federation.
Wishing you an interesting reading, we look forward to receiving articles and pictures for the next issue of “Words of Experience”, dedicated to “Volunteering in a World of Diversity” Please send your contributions to firstname.lastname@example.org, before 31 May 2020.
ICYE International Office