Dominican Ashfred Norris is among two Caribbean youth delegated who will attend the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference.
According to the press release from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Norris along with Jamaican Michael Morgan are advocating for increased youth involvement in climate change planning. The two took part in the recently concluded Youth Climate Change Conference (YCCC) in Jamaica and thereafter travelled to Bonn, Germany as participants in the Conference of Youth (COY 13) and UNFCCC’s COP 23, supported by the J-CCCP.
“During COY 13, the pair were members of a working group which produced an output document and worked diligently to ensure that the Caribbean and the Youth Statement on Climate Change issued at the end of YCCC featured in the document”, the press release reads.
Norris, a student of the Dominica State College, cited statistics highlighting how Hurricane Maria impacted social structures to include health and education.
The release adds, “He maintained that, “Youth voices are important but, it’s just the first step. When we look at the Ladder of Youth Participation, we see that the lowest levels are manipulation and tokenism. These are where youth seem to have a role but, it’s mostly ceremonial or, for show. The highest level is youth-initiated decisions and this is what we want to attain.””
J-CCCP is a regional initiative working in eight Caribbean countries in order to reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports, setting the region on a low-emission development path as well as improve the region’s ability to respond to climate risks and opportunities in the long-run, through resilient development approaches that go beyond disaster response to extreme events.