Youth Workshop, NIMS School, Sharjah UAE

Youth driving change

Green Hope UAE conducts capacity building workshop on HFA and DRR

Children and youth are amongst the largest groups in civil society. They are also amongst the most vulnerable to disasters and their consequences. Disasters have far reaching impacts not only on the immediate survival of young people but also in the long term. This is particularly accentuated in the global south where the future of children and youth are at stake when they confronted with disasters and calamities.

Children orphaned as a consequence of disasters face a bleak future of gross exploitation and hardships. Thus any disaster risk reduction (DRR) plan must take into consideration the unique needs of children and youth.

We, children and youth, are the future generations and need to be a part of the dialogue for a sustainable future, which also includes our voices in the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action, and a special focus on building disaster resilience for children and youth. Advocacy and outreach need to be key elements in the implementation of the HFA, since it is imperative that young people are aware and are a part of the process.

Youth Workshop, NIMS School, Sharjah UAE

Green Hope United Arab Emirates (UAE) conducted a youth workshop for high school students in the city of Sharjah on 29 January 2015. The New Indian Model School (NIMS) hosted the event and scores of high school students actively participated. The primary objective was to build a culture of disaster resilience amongst youth, who, quite often, are at the greatest risk. We had presentations on the Hyogo Framework for Action with special focus on its priority areas 1 and 3. This workshop aimed to make disaster resilience a local and regional priority, through education and awareness raising. We also wanted to show our solidarity with the “Safe Schools” programme in our region.

Our message to the assembled youth was simply to “be prepared”. We urged them to develop an ethic of prevention and preparedness. We reiterated the need to make the right choices and decisions about our environment, society, infrastructure and even our socially responsible behaviour within school. The decisions that we take or ignore makes us more resilient, or conversely, more susceptible to disasters. We also conveyed that reducing food wastage and building reserves must be part of the planning for disaster risk preparations .

Green Hope UAE is a youth led organization , founded by 14-year-old Kehkashan Basu, an Indian resident of Dubai. It was founded in 2012 after Kehkashan returned from Rio+20, with the objective of providing the young people of the region a networking platform and raise awareness, build outreach and conduct ground level community driven projects on all aspects of sustainable development.  Green Hope UAE now has over 800 members, some as young as 7 years old. They regularly conduct workshops, which they call “environment academies” and through them, the core group trains young people on engagement and advocacy.  This enables them to build a culture of sustainability as a way of life amongst the children and youth of the region.

Contact

Kehkashan Basu 
Global Coordinator for Children and Youth (UNEP MGFC) 
Youth Ambassador World Future Council
Volunteer – World Youth Foundation
Founder President Green Hope UAE
A World at School Global Youth Ambassador