On 12th July, The Climate Action Network Tanzania (CAN Tanzania) organized a climate change march to raise awareness on climate change and climate justice and to support a global day of action demanding governments to have a clear plan for funding a sustainable future. The theme of the march was ‘To Promote Clean Energy for Sustainable Future and to Finance Future Development (FFD3)’.
The Catholic Youth Network for Environmental Sustainability in Africa (CYNESA) was also invited to take part in this march. We had a chance to talk to the participants on how CYNESA works in bringing faith perspective in climate change and environmental issues at large.
The marching involved youths from different organizations and institutions including Climate Change Forum (ForumCC), Tanzania Traditional Energy Development Organization (TaTEDO), Tanzania Youth Network (TYN) and students from secondary schools such as Jitegemee Secondary School. We started the marching from Ardhi University carrying banners written different messages such as ‘Making climate finance effective, zero vulnerability – Leaders take a lead’ and ‘Heal the Earth, Heal the Future – Young Generation Caring For Creation’. “We need remarkable outcome in Financing for Development and we also need action on Finance, not speeches,” said Mr. Tajiel Urioh from ForumCC.
Core team member from CYNESA Tanzania, Lilian Samson addressed the participants, pointing out that youths have a role to care of Earth’s creation for the present and for the next generation and invited them to take part in day to day activities in cleaning the environment so as to make the Earth a better place to live. Lastly, the organizer from CAN Tanzania spoke about the meeting that was going on in Addis Ababa as well as gave out some highlights on COP21 that will be held in Paris, France in November/December this year and encouraged youths to participate.
CYNESA is a member of The Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) and on 7th May this year, the GCCM petition was endorsed by Pope Francis. After the petition endorsement, we now have the responsibility to collect signatures from different part of the world so as to reach the one million signatures and prayers as targeted. Therefore, we had a chance to collect signatures from the participants who attended the Climate Change march.
Thereafter, Desdery Moses, Core Team Member of CYNESA Tanzania, was invited to talk with the youths of St Francis of Assisi Parish at Pugu. He talked to them about the just released Encyclical (Laudato Si) and how the team was planning to celebrate the feast day of St Francis of Assisi, the Patron Saint of Ecology on 4th October. Desdery further shared with them about his trip to Rome and how to define the issues of environment and climate change in a faith perspective through engaging Catholic social teachings. He informed them about the GCCM petition and invited them to participate by signing.
Some of the challenges the CYNESA team faced is language barrier since Swahili is more commonly used than English, hence they felt the need of a Swahili text translation of the encyclical so as to reach as many people as possible in Tanzania!
CYNESA – TANZANIA Team.