Diving into Action: Empowering Ocean Youths for a Sustainable Future

Photo credit: Shelley Addison-Bell

by Shelley Addison-Bell, Communications and Brand Lead, Ocean Youth Working Group

The waves of change are being led by youth all around the world who are echoing the urgent call for action against the climate crisis.

The Ocean Youth Working Group of the Commonwealth Youth Climate Change Network (CYCN) hosted a capacity-building session to empower young minds towards creative and innovative solutions. The “Building Creative and Innovative Skills in Ocean Youths” workshop celebrated World Creativity and Innovation Day, and Kal Glanznig, an Australian Climate Change activist, led the charge.

Kal Glanznig’s documentary, “Rising Up,” shows resilience and adaptation in the face of environmental adversity across Australia and the Pacific. Kal resonated the vital message that hope lies not in passive worry, but in proactive engagement. We must harness the power of collective action and collaboration to protect our oceans and secure a sustainable future.

Protecting the ocean is not a switch you can turn on and off. It is a continuous journey of dedication, collaboration, and unwavering resolve

Kal Glanznig

Collaboration is an effective change-making tool. Participants were encouraged to identify their community and anyone they are connected to around them and continue to expand their circle of influence. Whether within local neighbourhoods or global networks, every individual possesses the agency to ignite change within their sphere, finding allies to work through the complexities of the ocean and climate change space, and work towards unity. By seeking out like-minded individuals and organisations, ocean youths can amplify their impact and foster meaningful change on a larger scale.

“Whenever we are communicating about our shared ocean and climate change, we should focus on communicating the common ground and fostering inclusive dialogues so that we can overcome barriers and progress towards sustainability,” Kal emphasised.

He also highlighted listening to the wisdom of previous generations and learning from decades of environmental degradation. Attendees also discussed the availability of funding and resources for innovative solutions. However, through resilience and determination, asking for assistance and help, ocean youths can secure the resources necessary to enact meaningful change.

In the words of Kal Glanznig, “Protecting the ocean is not a switch you can turn on and off. It is a continuous journey of dedication, collaboration, and unwavering resolve”. Together, let us rise to the challenge, for the sake of our planet, our oceans, and generations yet to come!

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