By the TorchLight Newspaper
Young people in Sierra Leone are ready to join the global youths to take action to mitigate the causes of climate change for a sustainable and prosperous future. But how prepared are they? What’s their resilience?
It is in regards to this, on the Friday the 18th October 2019 at the Youyi Building, YARDOSL launched the ‘My environment, My priority’ project to train 50 students from 5 Senior secondary schools in Freetown as Young Environmental Activists.
This one-day training was started with a project launch wherein the CEO and Executive Director of YARDOSL and a representative from the Environmental Protection Agency, National Youths Service and Legallia Foundation made statements on behalf of their institutions and on the importance of environmental awareness for a sustainable future.
YARDOSL as a youth empowerment agency believes in the principle that young people must be custodians of the earth. If we don’t protect our earth, who else will? Asked the young CEO, Mr. Ahmid C Jalloh. He further lamented on the relevance of young people to live sustainably to save our planet.
The CEO’s words were reaffirmed by the statement from the Deputy Director of Planning of the Environmental Protection Agency, Mr. Brian, who highlighted the functions of the EPA and the importance of environmental protection for development. Both the representative from the National Youth Service, Mr. Sylvester, and his compatriot from the Legallia Foundation, Mrs. Regina Nicol stressed the importance of young people to use their energy and skill to preserve and protect the planet for a better future free of disasters, land degradation, and hunger.
Immediately after the launch of the project and inspirational statements from the distinguished guests, the training commenced.
The training comprised of topics facilitated by eminent youths who have demonstrated selfless effort to the development of society.
When I heard the theme of the training, I couldn’t help but feel obliged to participate. Said Ibrahim Jalloh, a visually impaired student from the Prince of Wales Senior Secondary School. He continued, the theme which reads that protecting our earth must be everyone’s responsibility does not only respect our right to inclusion but also inspired me. And I feel proud to be a Young Environmental Activist of YARDOSL because I have always had a feeling that People with Disabilities should be actively involved in whatever way they can contribute to environmental protection. This is because we are the most vulnerable. Whenever there is an environmental hazard or disaster, we suffer the most. So as from today, I will use my voice to educate and inspire others to live sustainably.
Tinah Fornah from St. Joseph Convent Secondary School was quick to point out why she felt this training is different from all other environmental protection training she had been involved in. She elaborates: when you look at the course structure like an introduction to climate change, sustainable living, sustainable development goals, leadership, advocacy, etc. you see, unlike other training you are not only thought how to plant trees but how to live sustainably and how to act and speak for the earth as well. And the facilitators are very young, smart, and inspiring. Overall, this is one of my best experiences so far. And I will not only have this training certificate for memory sake but I promise to do all I can to contribute to the fight against climate change in Sierra Leone.