Why I’m taking part in the Relay to COP 26

Florence Wright

This year in November world leaders are meeting in Glasgow at COP 26, the UN climate conference. We, the Young Christian Climate Network (YCCN), are asking them to rise to the moment and protect people over bank balances. So as an act of hope, love and faith we are walking from Cornwall (where the G7 meeting took place) to Glasgow as a Relay and we’d love you to join us, all ages and all denominations. The relay began on the 14th June, I will personally be taking part as it passes through London in early August. My specific role has been coordinating events in London.

I became involved with YCCN over the course of my ‘COVID Gap year,’ because instead of travelling I have grown in a passion for climate justice (The cliche of ‘finding yourself on a gap year’ rings true for me!). I had always cared about the planet and attended the school strikes for climate, but it was during the pandemic that I had the time to realize how serious the situation is, that it is something God cares about and that I could get involved.

I began to respond to this myself by making small changes to my own lifestyle like cutting down on plastic and up-cycling but found it was easy to become overwhelmed at how small an impact my own decisions made. So joining YCCN enabled me to be involved with collaborative action and our shared faith makes the group encouraging and hopeful to be a part of. I still try to make changes to my lifestyle but these have become more like acts of worship to God and creation rather than because I think they alone will save the planet. Therefore don’t feel guilty if you find these changes hard or get things wrong. Imperfect sustainability is the way to go.

YCCN has shown me that together we have power and with our Relay we have specific asks for the government and world leaders particularly around money. This is because those countries in vulnerable situations who are most affected by climate change, are the least at fault and the least able to afford solutions. Therefore we call on the UK government to cancel public debt for these countries, and put pressure on private creditors to do the same. Do join us for the relay to COP 26! You can sign up for the Relay on our website https://www.yccn.uk/. You can check our map to see if the relay is coming near you.

Florence Wright is a 19 year old Gap Year Student Living in London with a passion for Climate Justice. She is a member of YCCN (Young Christian Climate Network), particularly involved with organising relay events in London. She is heading up to Durham University in September.

GET INVOLVED!

Do join us for an event in London 4th – 9th August you will find all the details here from services to picnics: https://www.yccn.uk/london

We are particularly looking for people to join us as we walk from St Paul’s Clapham to St Paul’s Cathedral on the 5th. There will be refreshments served at Lambeth Palace on route. Meeting at St Paul’s Clapham at 10am.

We need to know numbers, so please sign up for the walk here: https://www.yccn.uk/

We’d also love for you to sign up to Slack – this is the easiest way for you to get in contact with other people in your route section. You can find that sign-up link HERE