Scouts join UNEP International Children and Youth Conference in Korea
Scouts from around the world joined the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) International Children and Youth Conference in Daejeon Korea from the 17th to 23rd of August 2009 to focus on how to tackle the climate change challenge. This was the world's largest-ever truly global youth gathering on climate change with some 700 young people, ranging from 10 to 24 years of age, from 110 countries.
Scouts from Hungary, Kenya, Maldives, Mexico, Swaziland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom actively represented their countries and the World Organization of the Scout Movement as a whole throughout the event, along with Rod Abson of the World Scout Bureau. The participants engaged in many interesting activities, including workshops, presentations, field trips and discussions sessions. A special Global Town Hall brought together the thoughts of all of the participants and another 200 young people at 15 remote sites around the world, to generate a youth statement entitled: 'Listen to Our Voices: The Future Needs Strong Vision and Leadership.
Gergely Lakatos, Scout from Hungary said, "I have always seen the environment as being the playground for Scouting activities. Coming to this conference has really made me see that there are so many environmental problems and lots of projects where people are taking action. I now am going to look at how we can do more action that is meaningful and has long term benefits for the environment especially at the 10th Central European Jamboree in Hungary. I believe that the Scout Movement is perfectly placed to take action for the environment, especially before the UN Climate Conference in December."
Christoph Burckhardt, Scout from Switzerland said, "It's amazing to see the huge number of young people working on environmental projects and to experience their passion. The discussions and workshops with the other participants were very inspiring. They showed that, even with people you haven't known for very long, interaction can be very productive. The most impressive activity of the whole conference was the 'Global Town Hall', where the statement for the UN was put together.
The participants are now enthusiastic to spread the message of the Youth Statement to their government leaders and communities, to keep in contact with the other participants and to continue to show leadership in environmental action projects.
Scouts are encouraged to read the Youth Statement and to share this through their networks.
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