Woodcraft Folk trustees released a COP26 statement this October, making it clear our commitment to support children and young people to demand action to address the greatest threat to our world: the climate emergency.
Woodcraft Folk groups across the UK have taken part in lots of different activities ahead of COP26 hosted in Glasgow, Scotland. Groups, districts and individuals have taken action led by children and young people’s environmental concerns.
Groups of all ages have been involved in several art projects including ‘Leaves for life’, a mass action of solidarity with indigenous communities of Colombia.
Members have also been involved with ‘Moths to a Flame’, another mass-participation art installation of moths made from milk bottles.
Some of our Glasgow groups even made a giant caterpillar puppet with support from a community artist ready for the Global Day of Action march.
Young people made banners and signs, practised singing climate related songs, and practised how to protest ahead of the big day of action.
Global Day of Action (6th November)
Groups from Glasgow, Edinburgh, Falkirk and Stirling joined the Glasgow Global Day of Action march on 6th November in the pouring rain, which later gave way to a rainbow with the rain eventually stopping in time for the destination, where everyone enjoyed hot chocolate and parachute games. Some children and their families marched two days in a row, having also taken part in the Fridays for the Future school strike the day before.
Our groups also supported COP26 Coalition events by lending big tents and cooking equipment, and some members volunteered to help cater for the La Minga group of indigenous leaders.
Young people were keen to spread the message about what COP26 is and why climate justice matters. Young people from Glasgow made a series of 3 short animations for other young people to help explain what a COP is and why it’s important that COP26 makes a difference. One of these films was picked up by Education Scotland, showcased at the Scottish Learning Festival in September, and shortlisted for the Scottish Youth Film Foundation Change competition. You can view these films (in English) here.
The People’s Summit
The People’s Summit held a youth day in Glasgow on 7th November. Lots of Woodcraft Folk volunteers ran a wide game for over 50 people in one of the few COP26 spaces specifically for children, young people and intergenerational groups.
The active, running around game for children and adults explores how different sections of society can influence climate policy and shares understanding of the direct impact of government and leaders’ decisions. Groups also took part in a performance with Little Amal about her search for safety and community in the face of global change. Little Amal is a 3.5 metre-tall puppet of a young refugee girl, who has travelled over 8,000km from the border of Syria to COP26, visiting cities, towns and villages.