The climate crisis is already affecting children and young people, both physically, developmentally and emotionally. Climate-related anxiety, worry and lack of hope for the future are growing problems that affect young people’s mental health.
A recent Swedish survey showed that six out of ten young people between the ages of 12 and 18 are worried about the climate – and only half of respondents felt hopeful that we will solve the climate crisis. Likewise, a recent UK survey with 2,000 children showed that nearly three quarters (73%) said they are worried about the state of the planet right now, and 17% reported having their sleeping and eating habits affected by their concerns. When children and young people learn about the seriousness of the climate crisis, and at the same time don’t see that adults are acting forcefully enough, anxiety, frustration and anger can arise.
Many feel that the adult generation is failing them. The good news is that as a parent, grandparent or other adult who cares about children, you can play a key role in helping children and young people deal with knowledge about the climate crisis. Here are our top tips for how you can become better at meeting young people’s questions, feelings and commitment to the climate.
Our Kid’s Climate is network of 58 parent groups from 23 countries who are uniting for climate action to protect the kids we love from the climate crisis. The New Zealand group is Parents for Climate NZ.
Many feel parents must act for their kids, because many are too young to make their voices heard and to vote.. Network members believe that working with parents on climate has the potential to move mountains.
Our Kid’s Climate work to build climate-parent leadership through three main strategies:
- supporting parent-led climate groups through webinars, training programs, mentorship and microgrants.
- amplifying the parent voice through strategic communications and creative projects.
- connecting groups across locations to develop shared ideas and campaigns.
They have created a powerful guide on how to talk with children about the climate crisis.
Download the guide HERE