From our friends at iMatter

We are so proud of these young folks at iMatter who are taking action on climate change in their communities!  These are the programs and people we want to encourage and support our elders to get involved with!



 

Jen Chandler

Director of Operations at ECA

Observations of an Elder in Training….

A year and a half ago, I joined Elders Climate Action as the first staff position to help move the organization forward and achieve its critical mission. My choice to join the volunteers at ECA has without a doubt proven to be one of the most fulfilling decisions of my life. Although I am not yet an elder, I consider myself an elder in training; someone with a personal responsibility to learn from previous generations, bridge with younger generations, and bring change for future generations and all life.

Since returning from Elders Climate Action Day in Washington, D.C. I have spent time reflecting on the experience. Beyond the obvious highlights including brilliant and inspiring speakers, a discovered love of the diverse city, and taking to the streets with over 250,000 people at the Climate March.  I was deeply moved and inspired by the passion, commitment, caring, and deep questioning that came from the elders in attendance.  For me, one of the most powerful moments of ECAD was the visit from Our Children’s Trust and FrostPaw, and subsequent impromptu apology from ECA member, Margo Frank. (see Youtube Video below)

What I experienced most in D.C., was multiple generations standing up and taking action for the climate. It was a vibrant illumination of a common value, a common acceptance of responsibility for the damage that has happened, and a common commitment to take action for the future.  Take Climate Action Now, Take Climate Action Often. Protect the Future.



 

Chapter 2 Post

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Julie Hantman

VOICE OF A FUTURE ELDER

 

Julie Hantman, National Outreach Manager, Mom’s Clean Air Force

The climate movement is picking up steam and its increasing diversity is a big reason why. No longer can any headline say e.g. ‘environmentalists decry roadblocks to climate action.’ That’s because it isn’t just environmentalists speaking up anymore. We’ve got a big and bigger tent. There are scientists of course, there are experts on national security, food security and you-name-it security. There is the faith community, labor, and more.

And generationally there is the youth movement, there are moms and dads – and now elders.

The climate movement needs the unique voices of elders.  Parents of school-age children have the exquisite focus of day to day parenting to bring to bear in our advocacy.  Elders – grandparents or not – have the long view. As I meet more ECA members I see plenty of internal diversity but the common denominator perhaps is the passion that comes from experience and dynamic reflection.  A different flavor! We need you and it’s a pleasure to think and take action together.

NoteJulie adds new meaning to being a partner by spending a day with ECA elders to participate in our next Elders Climate Action event in 2017



 

Delaney Reynolds

A Young Woman We Can All Be Inspired By


Delaney Reynolds is an amazing young woman who lives in Miami, Florida. At the age 16 of Delaney became very much aware of the danger climate change poses for her, her community and the wider world, and she is not sitting back and waiting for others to take action. Not Delaney.

She is the founder of the Miami Sea Rise, has created an awesome website miamisearise.com, and has published three books for elementary and middle school students on climate change and sea level rise. At age 16, those are stupendous accomplishments. But on the issue of climate change, Delaney is unstoppable.

She has created PowerPoint presentations for young people and delivers them to students in schools, not only in her home state but via video conferencing to students in places like India and Vietnam.

Delaney’s work is being noticed.  She recently gave a TED Talk and is also featured in a video alongside scientists, politicians, and authors, Ahead of the Tide, and she was selected as a Youth Leadership Council Member at EarthEcho International, a nonprofit environmental and conservation organization founded by siblings Philippe and Alexandra Cousteau.

This young woman has written a letter on behalf of the world’s children asking each of us to do whatever we can to protect them from the threats of global warming and sea level rise. Please read what she has to say and ask yourself: if she can do this, what can I do to help turn back the rising tide of global warming? Visit The Sink or Swim Project,



 

Sue Blythe, Elders Climate Action member and creator of the FutureFlash!

FutureFlash! Project Sowing a Culture of Peace with the Elders Climate Network

In this holiday season, when people sing of Peace On Earth, I’m inviting my own family — and yours — to tell what this statement means to them. “Recognize that peace is the wholeness created by right relationships with oneself, other persons, other cultures, other life, Earth, and the larger whole of which all are a part.”  – The Earth Charter

I want my six grandchildren to know why I care so passionately about the condition our planet is in.  I need for them to know that I believe that we can change climate change.  I’m telling them about significant moments in my own journey.  And I want them to consider their own part in the unfolding saga of how the human family learned to live together in a culture of peace. Together, we are Sowing a Culture of Peace, with the Earth Charter as a guide.

Read More

Did You See ECA in the USA Today?

These grandparents are dropping everything to fight climate change

By Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, Published 9:24 a.m. ET April 23, 2019

Late-blooming climate activists

Leslie Wharton calls herself a “late-blooming” activist. Now 67, she still works full time as a lawyer, a career that’s kept her so busy she simply hadn’t paid much attention to the issue of climate change.

She was never much for protesting, even though she was in college during the Vietnam War.

“I didn’t go out and march. I was too deep in my studies,” she said. She ended up getting a Ph.D. in American history, then going to law school.

A six-month sabbatical gave her time to catch up on her reading. What she learned about climate change worried her as someone who had studied the rise and fall of Babylonia, Assyria and ancient Rome and Greece.

“We live in a world we think is forever. Because I had been a historian, I realized that there’s nothing guaranteed,” she said.

She lives in Montgomery County, Maryland and in 2015 she got involved with Elders Climate Action, a national group of grandparents and concerned elders who work to fight climate change. “I stepped out of my comfort zone and went to a gathering in D.C.,” she said.

It’s not something she’s really comfortable with as a “totally introverted non-activist,” but she feels she must. There’s no time to lose, she said.

“If we play our cards right, we could actually come through or we could lose it all. A lot turns on what happens in the next year, five years, 10 years. We can’t wait 10 years to start moving.”

Last month, she did a presentation on climate change at a nearby retirement community. She’s also worked with some elders in a supported living community on the nuts and bolts of political organizing.

“They have been busy protesting fracking gas pipeline construction for the past year!” she said.

Read the Full Article Here

 



 

Did You See ECA in Yes! Magazine?



A Climate Action for Every Type of Activist

No matter your age, gender, race, or political ideology, there are ways to fight climate change that fit your life and values.

Read the Original Full Article here:  Yes! Magazine

Most of us have heard about U.N. researchers warning that we need to make dramatic changes in the next 12 years to limit our risk of extreme heat, drought, floods, and poverty caused by climate change. Report after report about a bleak climate future can leave people in despair.

But another option is good for you and the planet.

Susan Clayton, a professor of psychology and environmental studies at the College of Wooster, says getting involved with a group can help lift your climate-related anxiety and depression in three ways. Working with like-minded folks can validate your concerns, give you needed social support, and help you move from feeling helpless to empowered.

And it can make a difference. “Groups are more effective than individuals,” Clayton says. “You can see real impact.”

So join forces with like-minded citizens and push for change.

The U.S. Climate Action Network lists more than 175 member organizations, which are activist groups working through energy policy to fight climate change. And that doesn’t include all of the environmental groups out there. So you have lots of options for getting involved.

Full disclosure: I found my activism comfort zone with Citizens’ Climate Lobby. I love its bipartisan, nonconfrontational style, and it suits me. What’s your climate action style?

I’ve done some matchmaking for you. Here are nine activism styles that might fit, along with some groups that align with them. Pick one, and you can start making change.

1. You believe in a bipartisan approach.

Citizens’ Climate Lobby is an option for those who believe the best strategy is to gain support on both sides of the aisle. The group trains people in ways to build political will in their communities and to effectively lobby their members of Congress. It asks volunteers to bring respect and empathy to all of those encounters, even when talking with people who may vehemently disagree with their cause.

What distinguishes Citizens’ Climate Lobby from many climate groups is its singular legislative goal—to see a fee placed on carbon, with the proceeds returned to citizens as dividends. After more than 10 years of lobbying, a bill similar to their proposal has been introduced with bipartisan sponsors in the U.S. House.

2. You’re an educator looking for support.

The Alliance for Climate Education can be a climate teacher’s best friend. It offers educational and interactive resources that can be streamed to high school classrooms. The group also works to fight anti-science policies that have been cropping up in some school districts and helps train teachers to counter misinformation.

3. You’re ready to take it to the streets.

Consider joining 350.org. You may find yourself attending rallies, lobbying elected officials, helping get out the vote, or even getting arrested for protesting fossil fuel projects.

“To solve and fight the climate crisis, we need to employ every tactic we have,” says Lindsay Meiman, 350 U.S. communications coordinator.

One of the group’s more high-profile fights has been against the Keystone XL pipeline. But 350 members are also encouraged to take actions that make sense in their own communities. For instance, Meiman has been involved in a campaign against a fracked natural gas pipeline under New York Harbor.

4. You’re a fierce mama or papa bear looking out for your kids.

Check out Moms Clean Air Force, a million-strong organization of moms (plus dads, grandmas, aunts, uncles, godparents). These parents show up in senators’ offices, with babies on hips, to talk about climate change. They testify against rollbacks of clean air regulations. They work with their mayors to spark change locally, and they write or call their representatives.

“We have this saying: ‘Tell Congress to listen to your mother,’” says Heather McTeer Toney, national field director.

5. You prefer working with people who share your culture.

If you’re a person of color, working with White progressives may not feel comfortable for a variety of reasons, no matter how welcoming they try to be.

Hip Hop Caucus is an option for anyone who embraces hip-hop culture regardless of age or race, says Mustafa Santiago Ali, a former senior vice president. The group takes a holistic approach, linking culture and policy. Its work ranges from registering people to vote to lobbying members of Congress to producing the radio show and podcast Think 100.

Other options for climate fighters of color: the Indigenous Environmental Network, GreenLatinos, Ecomadres, and the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program.

6. You’re young and ready to change the world.

The Sunrise Movement started in April 2017 and got lots of attention last year for its protest along with U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s office demanding a committee to study the Green New Deal proposal.

The Sunrise target age is 14 to 35, and most members are in their teens and 20s. The group is growing fast—100 new hubs opened within two months in communities across the country after November. Communications Director Stephen O’Hanlon says the group’s overarching goal is “taking on the corrupting influence of fossil fuels and making climate change an urgent priority in every corner of the country.”

And if you’re still in high school, another option is Alliance for Climate Education.

7. Your spiritual beliefs guide your life—and your climate actions.

Many religious groups find support for caring for the planet in the Scriptures. Two that are doing important work are Young Evangelicals for Climate Action and its parent group, Evangelical Environmental Network.

Because evangelical Christians are often more conservative than traditional environmentalists, these groups are able to get an audience with Republican lawmakers (they’ve met with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell) who are less receptive to liberals. They also work to educate fellow churchgoers and spur them to action.

Other faith-based options include Green Faith, which unites people from the Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, and Buddhist traditions in working to protect the planet, and Interfaith Power and Light.

8. You have more money than time.

If you’re too busy to volunteer time but would like to support the climate cause financially, all of the above groups have operating expenses and need donations.

You may also want to invest in one of the large established groups that have been in the environmental battle for years, like the Environmental Defense Fund, Natural Resources Defense Council, and Sierra Club Foundation.

Charity Navigator, an organization that ranks charities based on their financial health, accountability, and transparency, can help you evaluate the groups. But be aware that relatively new or small groups may not be evaluated yet.

9. You’re older and want to fight for the next generation.

Elders Climate Action members are using their life experience and skills—and for many, the extra time they have in retirement—to try to make a difference on climate issues.

“Most of us won’t be around when the worst of climate change hits, but the people we love will be,” says Leslie Wharton, Elders co-chair.

Although members are nominally 55 and older, anyone can join; people as young as 18 have. And even though some members are in frail health, they can still get a lot done. For instance, members of an Elders group at an assisted living home write letters to lawmakers to ask for pledges of action on climate from candidates who come to speak to them.



 

Building a Green Legacy: Elders Climate Action

Geri and grandkids
Geri Freedman was motivated to join Elders Climate Action to protect the planet for her grandsons Nathan and Noah, pictured here along with her and her husband Dave. Photo: Natalie Brand.

We are excited to share this wonderful blog post by Climate Optimism, Building a Green Legacy: Elders Climate Action

Thank you Climate Optimism for highlighting the work of Elders Climate Action!

Read the blog here:  Building A Green Legacy: Elders Climate Action

 

 

 

 

 



 

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