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Investing in the future of local climate leadership through the Climate Change Youth Fund

Date: 14 June 2023
Author: Athithra and Amelie
Title: Members of the Richmond and Kingston Youth Council

This year, the Richmond and Kingston Youth Council have brought back the Climate Change Youth Fund, an amazing opportunity for young people who have these great ideas on how to combat climate change, but don't know how to utilise them.

A while back, the project was offered to the youth in Richmond, but we are excited to expand it and present the fund to those in Kingston too. This project allows us as a Youth Council to bring young people's ideas to life. It's also a fantastic way to raise awareness about climate change and its impact in our local area, especially during Great Big Green Week here in Richmond!

Two pupils from Orleans School have communicated how they felt about applying to the Climate Change Fund for their Green Play project and its impact on their school life:

Asya Lee said:

"Applying for the Climate Youth Fund was very ambitious! My only motivation was to support the school and my peers in their efforts to create opportunities for our generation to take control in tackling climate change as well as building sustainable ways of living. The Green Play will unite Orleans Park School, Capella House School, Metro Tennis & Sports with the support of Richmond Council in providing momentum needed for the young generation to achieve the ambitious goal of reducing harmful habits, preparing for a changing climate and helping nature to thrive. I look forward to learning more about the links between sports and the environment, and we are excited to continue to develop our sustainability journey."

Villain said:

"This project is definitely something that I am proud of and will look forward to sharing knowledge and ideas with my mates on the playground. I will have the advantage of seeing the Green Play initiative grow with time as I am currently a student in Year 7. We are starting the project with a weekly green sports session and by the end of my journey at Orleans Park School, we could perhaps host Richmond Green Sports Week!"

The opportunity to apply for the Climate Change Youth Fund was advertised to many young people in Richmond, and a total of five were chosen for funding. After reading through all of the applications, we went through shortlisting to note questions we wanted to ask and decided to interview those projects. We chose five projects for Richmond in the end.

Selected projects

In celebration of Great Big Green Week, and to recognise the work of the successful applicants, we thought to share with you some of the exciting prospects of these future projects below.

All these projects will run until March 2024, with each allowing the opportunity for additional volunteers and young people outside of the initial applicants to help in its development. We wish all of these project’s success, and hope that you enjoy getting involved over the next couple of months, along with the rest of the community, to promote a greener Richmond.

Grey Court School 

Their project will focus on a ‘living wall’ that will promote a more natural and calming environment for students to sit and reflect, whilst capturing carbon and pollutio.

Christ School

They are taking on a food waste reduction education programme, purchasing cabinets to fill with material to educate students and staff on resources for feeding the school community, and reducing the school carbon footprint. This project aims to meet the ‘Four C’s’ of the school’s sustainability plan: curriculum, campus, culture and community.

Powerstation Youth Centre

This project will focus on sustainability workshops to teach young people how to be more responsible in recycling, giving them the skills to not just throw away items, but to upcycle them, create new things and repurpose disused items.

Orleans School

The Green Play project, mentioned above, will focus on hosting sessions where students will do research and participate as educators and advocates to bring other pupils along the journey of tackling climate change.

Richmond Upon Thames

This eco-borders and bird boxes project aim to develop an area by the school car park for garden planting, to reduce noise and pollution. Students also want to construct bird boxes to add to the trees in this space.

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Updated: 14 June 2023