We hope that our stories will give you the courage to commit to rapid daring actions in your municipality, because you are the leaders of today – we know it is not easy – but this is what today’s challenges demand of you.
On Friday 9 October, as part of the Daring Cities 2020 Global Forum over 60 young people from around the world engaged in an event #DaringYouth: We Dare You To. One of the outcomes was this #DaringYouth Statement, which shows the collective aspirations participants have of their cities, to inspire urban leaders to take even more daring action on the Climate Emergency.
In a dozen small groups over Zoom, participants developed these daring visions for their home city in response to a major challenge that the city faces relating to the ICLEI development pathways. The strengths of this format allowed participants to form new personal relationships while our facilitators ran dozens of simultaneous conversations between youth and sustainability professionals from a smattering of cities across the globe.
Some of the issues that were discussed included: systemic racism, energy democracy, urban sprawl, land clearing, communities resilience, mental health, a lack of planning and governance failures, equitable distribution of resilience capacity in the community, leadership and leading by example, using the ‘neighbourhood scale’ to look at strengths in the community, decentralising power and supporting communities that need resources to adapt to climate change, equitable access to transport, reducing plastic waste, reclaiming public spaces, finding alternative more sustainable consumption options, electric and micro-mobility, and much more.
What this shows is young generations are aware of the complexities and the range of issues our cities are facing. But more than that, it shows that our young people are engaged, they are informed, and they are doing everything they can to send this message as clearly as they can to urban leaders, especially those of you who are attending the Daring Cities 2020 Global Forum. We hope that our stories will give you the courage to commit to rapid daring actions in your municipality, because you are the leaders of today – we know it is not easy – but this is what today’s challenges demand of you. Rest assured that we will be supporting all the daring decisions you take today, to make tomorrow a more equitable and sustainable world for us all.
We encourage you to read the stories submitted by participants in the #DaringYouth: We Dare You To session and submit your own daring vision too.