250 people gathered at the Omega Institute in Rhinbeck, New York, October 19-21 for a Drawdown Learn conference with Paul Hawken and his Project Drawdown leadership team. I had the privilege of representing Pachamama Alliance in sharing our unique contributions to this critical work of reversing global warming through the Pachamama Alliance Drawdown Initiative. What an experience of connection, vision, passion and collaboration!
Sue Staropoli and Paul Hawken at Drawdown Learn
I’ve been passionately immersed in the Pachamama Alliance Drawdown Initiative for over a year, and what struck me most about this conference was how many other groups and people are also passionately working on Drawdown as well. I realize I had been operating in a silo!
There were panelists and participants engaged in integrating Drawdown into municipalities, schools, libraries, businesses, universities, environmental non-profits, youth programs, indigenous groups, journalists, film-makers, and so much more! There were so many opportunities for collaborations at multiple levels.
One collaboration I particularly hope for is our connection with the Drawdown Eco-Challenge of the Northwest Earth Institute. Everyone can engage in that concrete way to engage in action and bring it to your groups.
A highlight was the final panel of seven youths, aged 14-23, from varied ethnic backgrounds, who had been part of the breakout sessions and powerfully shared their final message with us adults.
“We need intersectionality in the climate movement – indigenous, people of color, youth, and more.”
“Open the work up to young people”
“Give us a place at the table – mentor us, fund our efforts.”
“Adults need to empower youth with tools, opportunities to speak, and more.”
“Change educational systems. Empower teachers to empower kids.”
It’s a bit overwhelming to see so many possibilities for collaboration and not know where to begin! But among us we can make these connections and move forward toward reversing global warming.