The Planet Needs Help and I Will Stand Up for It

Climate Strike to takle every environmental challenge

UNICEF Thailand
A young man wearing a violet blue shirt with the text saying "Adults always tell us we're the future. But today, they just don't listen"
UNICEF Thailand

01 November 2019

“Fixing environmental issue isn’t a hobby; it is not something we can choose to do or not to do; it should be our responsibility. But right now, most people ignore this issue, and the responsibilities seem to fall on a handful of people”. This is the concern from Dee, a 12th Grade student who is advocating for better natural resource management and is taking on the global environmental crisis.

Start with yourself…Start from what is closet to you

Most kids today grow up fully aware of the impending environmental crisis. Many kids are passionate about the issue but sometimes the subjects taught in schools are not in line with what we want to learn. “At school, we have teachers who are interested in the climate and try to educate the kids about it. The school also has a collaboration project with NASA on Space Studies, but for me, I think these are not quite relevant to the context. It’s still not applicable to everyday life. I want to see something more tangible that I can apply to my daily life. Before we talk about going into space, we should talk about things that are closer to us like the environmental problem. We should use climate technology to solve the problem closer to home first.


Climate Strike’ to Tackle Every Environmental Challenge

Today, when we throw away garbage, it only disappears from our hands but not our planet. “Right now, as a member of Climate Strike Thailand, we are advocating for the government to switch to renewable energy including to encourage the practice of re-using materials. I live in the city and have seen too much garbage, so I feel I must do something. Then I met ‘Climate Strike Thailand’, a group that also wants world leaders to push for a sustainable solution on the environmental crisis. We didn’t put our focus on a specific area, but we have a mission to collect signatures for a petition for the government to adopt a renewable energy scheme. Other areas we’re tackling include reducing coal-based energy, reducing unrecyclable plastic and improve the ecological system through reforestation.”

“I also founded the Climate Club at school. Our group meets during lunch to discuss environmental issues and relevant technology. Sometimes we have workshops joined by external speakers and we also produced materials to disseminate knowledge. But I think these activities don’t get enough support.”


Equal Right to Express Our Thoughts

Kids are taught to respect adults, but they also want their voices to be heard. “I study in a public school that requires me to stay in line. We can’t express our thoughts freely, even though adults always tell us we’re the future of this nation. To this day, I still feel we are not heard. The lack of trust comes from the differences in experiences. I think if adults give us a chance to express our ideas, everything will be better. Not just the environmental issue but other aspects in the society as well. We should have more respect for each other. Since we were little, we are taught to respect adults, but no one mentions that adults should respect children too. This should be a global standard. We can't respect someone only because of their age. In my opinion, if we are to change anything, it needs to start from those in power first, not just changing the kids. We also must get serious on the environmental issue now, a 20-year plan isn’t enough. We might not have 20 years. We must act now.”