Youth Activists in Albania Develop a First Call to Action on Gender-Responsive Solutions to Climate Change
13 June 2022 - A group of fifteen young activists participated in a workshop to develop a Call to Action on Gender, Youth and Climate Change, organized by UN Women Albania, Tirana European Youth Capital and the Resource Environmental Centre (REC) Albania. The resulting Call to Action Draft will serve as a manifesto and will be circulated amongst youth organisations and institutions to push the climate and environmental justice agenda in Albania.
“I am really delighted that you are willing to take up the challenge and imagine some of the solutions that you think can work, to address the interconnectedness between inequalities and climate change and demand to be heard by policymakers,” said Michele Ribotta, UN Women representative in Albania.
The workshop was a follow-up to the Tirana Youth Forum ,hosted in April 2022, and provided the young participants with an opportunity to share ideas on gender-responsive solutions to climate change, including youth-led innovative actions.
One of the learning activities conducted during the workshop was a role-play exercise, where each participant “played out”, assumed the persona of someone who was differently affected by climate change, based on a number of scenarios. The purpose of this exercise was to spark a discussion around inequalities when it comes to tackling climate change, including in Albania. The group also discussed myths around climate change and the importance of raising awareness amongst their inner circle of friends and family about climate change.
The Director of REC Albania, Mihallaq Qirjo, talked about the interconnectedness between gender equality and climate change and how youth can play a crucial role in Albania. Mr Qirjo touched upon climate change and disasters and warned that the number of climate refugees in the world is bound to grow in the near future. “In order to save the environment, all of us must think collectively, rather than individually,” Mr Qirjo noted.
Participants shared recommendations on gender-responsive solutions to climate change. They reiterated their strong interest in ensuring that policies and programmes on climate change and environmental issues take into consideration the specific needs and vulnerabilities of women and youth in Albania, and recognize their potential in addressing climate change.
The Call to Action can also serve as the basis for youth organizations and networks’ contributions to the process of UN Climate Change Conference, due to take place in Egypt in November 2022.