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Is Someone Too Young To Be An Environmentalist?
What Greta Thunberg teaches us is that there is no such thing as too young to be an environmentalist. In fact, you should start teaching your children about how to protect the environment the moment they are born. They may not remember it but it will become part of their system—and yours! Also, teaching them is not always about verbal education. As they say, actions speak louder than words. If you, as parents, are natural environmentalists, then the children will naturally follow.
When the child is around four to five years old, they start seeing the world’s big picture.
At this age, children become more aware of their relationship with other people, as well as the gender of other people and personalities as well. This is the time of exploration. When children are exposed to eco-friendly practices when they were born, this is the age that they will impose what they learn in the real world. This is the time they definitely know that throwing garbage anywhere is not good. This is the time when the child may even offer to plant trees.
When Thunberg led a worldwide climate change rally that mobilized millions of people in major cities worldwide, people were astonished that a mere teenager could be a leader. People were left in awe when Thunberg called out leaders like American President Donald Trump who don’t believe in climate change. She faced global leaders in the United Nations and delivered a scathing speech about how they stole her childhood because they were not doing enough to mitigate the effects of climate change.
Environmental leaders are young
It is even more outstanding to know that Thunberg is not the only teen activist out there. There is a Greta Thunberg, who is from Sweden, all over the world. In Indonesia, they are Melati and Isabel Wijsen. The sisters started the campaign called Bye Bye Plastic Bags when they were just 12 and 10 years old, respectively. The grassroots campaign paid off when their local government unit banned single-use plastic bags, straws, and polystyrene in 2019.
Melati joined Thunberg in Davos, Switzerland this year for the World Economic Forum to raise the issue of global warming to world leaders including Trump. Canadian Autumn Peltier, 15, joined them. She has been a water activist since she was eight years old. She fought big companies that prevented her and her fellow members of the Wiikwemkoong First Nation in Northern Ontario from drinking clean water because of contamination from oil pipelines and other industrial activities.
Fionn Ferreira is an 18-year-old scientist from Ireland. He invented a new method of extracting microplastics from water when he was still in high school. He, Thunberg, Melati, Peltier, and other teenage activists from other parts of the world made history when they became the first teenagers to be welcomed in the World Economic Forum among world leaders.
A shirt that makes a difference
You can raise your own Greta Thunberg or Fionn Ferreira. Or you can raise your own environmentalist without necessarily taking the world stage. Doing something for the community is enough. Manakin Dance is a company that produces T-shirts, hoodies, and accessories hoping to make a difference in the world. All their products make a statement in support of the environment. They have shirts and hoodies for children. This is one way of educating the children about how to protect the environment. With Manakin Dance T-shirts, you can tell the children what the statements mean.
Manakin Dance also donates 10% of its profits to the World Wildlife Fund.
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