We are raising funds to organise COY16, a UN and COP26 endorsed global youth climate conference, that will support the wider youth climate movement. Also, it will be an opportunity to enhance the participation of youth and other excluded groups so that they can be heard — and count — in the upcoming UN Climate Change negotiations in Glasgow.
The youth's future is at stake, and we must be heard now in how society responds to the threat of climate emergency, otherwise we will bear the brunt if solutions are not initiated. We are already inheriting the futile decisions made by world leaders, and we will continue to inherit the consequences of global inaction in the years to come if things don’t change. Hence, it's imperative young people's voices must be front and center of global climate decisions; and together we can make a significant difference for future generations.
What is COY16?
The 16th UN Conference of Youth, scheduled to happen on 28-31 October 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland, UK, is the official precursor youth event of COP26, which is officially endorsed by the office of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth. COY, in its 16th year in 2021, is dubbed as the largest and longest running youth event to date. It is likewise dubbed as the most significant youth gathering for its capacity to directly contribute and intervene in the UN climate negotiations.
COY16 is being organised by YOUNGO, the official youth constituency of UNFCCC, in association with: UK Youth Climate Coalition, UK Student Climate Network, Fridays For Future Scotland and UK Youth4Nature. COY aims to be a space and a unique opportunity where youth climate activists and advocates from around the world come together, share, learn, and be stronger together, both in ensuring the youth voices are heard at COP26 as well as in the subsequent climate summits to come, across the world.
Who organises COY16?
COY16 is organised entirely by the youth and for the youth. We are a workforce of over 300+ from around the world. We are divided in 7 Working Groups, each specialised on different aspects of the conference planning.
Who will attend?
Over 150 countries will be represented by youth delegates (with special consideration for minority groups, indigenous people, and more) from all over the world.
What will COY16 look like?
COY16 will take place both online and in-person in Glasgow. Our programme spans over 3 days, where young people will be able to share their experiences, demands and learn from each other in order to further their own climate campaigns and initiatives both locally and globally.
- Plenary Sessions: Plenary sessions will take place on the major topics/themes of COY16. The themes of COY are usually aligned to the themes of COP. Plenary sessions are held in the largest hall of the venue. Most plenaries feature a panel of topic experts, where we aim to get a wide variety of perspectives.
- Parallel/Breakout Sessions: Parallel or breakout sessions are held on more specific subtopics, for example how climate change affects specific sectors and industries. Sessions are simultaneously run in different rooms and smaller groups of delegates. In addition, different working groups usually conduct activities in breakout sessions as they individually craft their official positions and demands for the official policy document of COY16.
- Skill-building Workshops: COY16 is not just about listening and discussing. The event also aims to provide practical workshops for delegates on topics such as campaigning skills, event management, youth mobilisation, public speaking and others. We envision that our delegates will bring home new skills that can be useful for their local youth and climate advocacies.
- Social/Networking Activities: Our nightly events, social and networking activities are designed to be interactive and immersive with the different cultures of our delegates and host nation.
What we hope to achieve?
We have 3 main objectives:
- To provide space for all young changemakers to meet, discuss, and take action against all systems driving the climate and ecological crisis.
- To create a sizable number of clear, ambitious and powerful demands that will be finished at our closing session alongside the COY Policy Report and will be delivered at COP26.
- To centre the voices, cultures and experiences of marginalised youth from across the societal spectrum both locally and internationally.
Why we need your support
We need your support to cover basic expenses. As this is a 3-day international conference, all proceeds from this crowdfunding will be solely used for organising the event: venue and accommodation logistics, UK and international participants travel arrangements, local transportation, programme materials and other welfare support.
We are mindful that the current pandemic could pose a challenge in ensuring maximum attendance of participants, especially from outside the UK. However, with your support, we will be able to adapt the plan to have a sizable number of international participants in compliance with the NHS COVID-19 safety measures. It is important that participants are able to attend the conference, not only for COY16, but to be a true part of the wider COP26 negotiations.
Donate what you can and thank you in advance for believing in our aspiration. Together, let's Unify for Change!