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  • Writer's pictureKate Addison

YCCBC's Youth Committee addresses climate grief in workshop


a pen drawing on paper of a woods scene
Drawing by Jose Reyeros.

Regular workshops are an important component of the YCCBC Youth Committee's work. Made up of 14 young people aged 17-30, the Committee seeks to foster inclusivity within the YCCBC through discussions of climate-focused topics, covering everything from Indigenous Sovereignty to climate science.


On May 23rd, YCCBC Youth Committee members gathered for a workshop on managing emotions related to the climate crisis. Led by Manvi Bhalla, the President and Co-Founder of Shake up the Establishment (SUTE), the session covered the role of emotions in decision-making and actions, and SUTE's Rest, Recovery, and Resistance framework for environmental activists.


Workshop participants explored themes of rest and emotional visualization through several creative exercises. In one exercise, they reflected on a place to which they felt emotionally connected. They then considered how the climate crisis might impact this space and envisioned how it could adapt and become resilient. Below, YCCBC Youth Committee member Allena Arnold shares her reflection:


"My home is more than just a building; it's the heart of my connections with friends, where we laugh over dinner parties, relax during movie nights, and get creative. This space is filled with comfort, joy, goofiness, and love. But thinking about the climate crisis makes me anxious. Rising living costs, the threat of displacement from sea level rise or severe weather, and worsening air quality from heat waves and wildfires are terrifying.


Yet, I dream of my home staying strong and resilient. I imagine embracing sustainable living practices to protect it on a physical level. Getting involved in community green projects and being prepared for emergencies feels vital for our collective well-being. Advocating for climate policies and raising awareness can help ensure our cherished spaces stay vibrant and full of life. Together, we can adapt and thrive, keeping our homes as sanctuaries of connection and joy."


Collaborating with youth-led organizations like Shake Up The Establishment through workshops empowers young members of the YCCBC Youth Committee to recognize their agency in reshaping our response to the climate crisis. Below, Youth Committee member Jose Reyeros describes his experience with the program:


"I consider that Shake Up The Establishment is doing necessary radical work in allowing us to be tender, emotionally at an individual and collective level. I have found the tools of the 3Rs framework to allow us to move through the paralyzing effects of the climate emergency and work together. I found the intersection of health sciences, decolonial theory, and activism a trailblazing scope to enact climate action."


You can learn more about Shake Up The Establishment through their website.

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