The Africa Climate Summit is an important forum that brings together influential leaders, climate change specialists, and other stakeholders from all over Africa and the rest of the globe to discuss and confront the climate change concerns that are currently being experienced on the continent. Even while everyone is feeling the effects of climate change, young people in Africa are especially susceptible to its repercussions because of their age.
The conference held from Sptember 4 to 6, 2023 in Nairobi, Kenya, at the instance of the Kenyan Government and the African Union, and it is noteworthy to highlight key takeaways as well as what the Africa Climate Summit means for the youth of African countries:
The summit presents a chance to increase awareness among young people regarding the critical need for immediate action regarding climate change. Young people can get an understanding of the severity of climate change and the role that their generation can play in lessening its impacts by participating in debates, workshops, and presentations.
Participation of Young People
The summit strongly supports and promotes the inclusion of young people in the deliberations and decision-making processes about climate change. It gives young people a forum in which they can express their concerns, talk about their creative ideas, and participate in the development of climate policies and initiatives. Young people are given more attention as a result of this engagement, and their capacity to effect positive change is recognised.
The summit includes programmes aimed at building capacity, which are designed to provide young people with the information and abilities they need to confront concerns relating to climate change. It provides educational tools, training sessions, and seminars with the goal of boosting participants’ understanding of climate science, sustainable practices, and climate resilience methods.
Opportunities for Collaborative Work
The summit provides a venue for young people to meet and network with like-minded individuals, organisations, and mentors who are trying to find solutions to the problem of climate change. Young people are able to gain knowledge from one another and magnify the impact of their individual efforts as a result of networking opportunities, which encourage collaboration and the sharing of best practices.
Access to Funding
Potential funders and investors who are interested in supporting climate change projects and initiatives frequently attend the summit. This provides attendees with the opportunity to access funding. Young people who have novel ideas for addressing climate change now have the possibility to obtain financial backing for the implementation of their ideas and projects as a result of this.
Platform to Explore Potentials
The summit encourages young people to explore sustainable business ideas and develop businesses that contribute to climate resilience and environmental protection. It serves as a forum for showcasing forward-thinking environmentally conscious companies and gives young business owners with possibilities for support and investment to assist them in bringing their ideas to fruition.
In general, the Africa Climate Summit plays a critical role in the creation of an atmosphere that is conducive for young people in Africa to engage in climate change mitigation and adaptation initiatives, learn from one another, and collaborate on these efforts.
The summit contributes to the development of a sustainable and resilient future for Africa by giving young people more agency and by making investments in their talents.
Olumide Idowu is Co-founder and Executive Director, ICCDI Africa