Mr. Adu M. Junior Educates Africa on Climate Change

Mr. Adu M. Junior Educates Africa on Climate Change

Our Executive Director in the person of Mr. Adu Mensah Junior was appointed to represent Ghana along with Ms. Gloria Maame Abena Otoo for the SIXTH Pan-African and Diaspora Virtual Youth Leadership Summit organized by African Renaissance and Diaspora Network (ARDN), in partnership with UNDP, UNFPA, UNWOMEN, UNHABITAT and the Government of Costa Rica.

Representing the gateway to Africa “Ghana”, our Founder and Leader was tasked to share his experiences on climate change, the impact of climate change in the context of gender, and gender inequalities in Africa and the Diaspora. 

Owing to his numerous experiences, our leader mentioned that, the impact of climate change is more evident in Africa because we cannot build mitigation measures and implement adaptation strategies to aid subsistent farmers in the continent. He further highlighted the following facts as some of the evident impacts of climate change in Africa. 

He expelled that, “We can only understand the disparate impact of climate change on men and women based on the social construction of gender roles. Thus, gender roles in Africa homes are one of the criteria for analyzing the impact of climate change in Africa. He highlighted the following impact of climate change; 

  • Increasing Water Stress and Water-Related Conflict
  • Constrained agricultural production and food insecurity 
  • Degradation of Livelihood in Coastal Environment due to rising sea levels. 
  • Biodiversity Loss Implicating Low access to Natural Resources 
  • Expanding range and prevalence of vector-borne diseases. 
    • The greater susceptibility of pregnant women, children, to such diseases; higher mortality rates
    • The burden of care on women, the elderly, children, and impacts quality of life and opportunities.

He further pointed out that, the possible means Africa can rise to remedy climate change especially bouncing back from the impact of Covid-19, we ought to implement more adaptational strategies for farmers and encourage sustainable livelihood in urban areas. He explained that some sustainable livelihood hacks such as cycling, reusing plastic bottles, home recycling of clothing’s and other home-based green/eco-friendly actions should be enshrined in the Africa community.

It is worthy to note that, the event was graced by the Vice President of Costa Rice, Epsy Campbell Barr, the Deputy Executive Director of United Nations Population Fund Ms. Diene Keita, and other global leaders.   

The meeting was held on the ZOOM VIRTUAL PLATFORM for over 3hours where several youth selected among 48 African countries discussed the fate of Africa towards Climate Change and Gender related issues.  

Lessons I Learnt From the Green Ghana Project/Day.

Lessons I Learnt From the Green Ghana Project/Day.

LESSONS I LEARNED FROM GREEN GHANA DAY: MR BENJAMIN EDWARDS SHARES HIS STORY.

The great French Marshall once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow-growing and wouldn’t reach maturity for 100 years. The Marshall replied, “In that case, there is no time to lose; plant it this afternoon! -John F. Kennedy.

The above quote is a sober reflection on how I have already forfeited unknown people and generations from enjoying the necessary ecosystem services derived from trees.

Early in the month of May 2021, I visited my mentor, Mrs. Vivian Aye-Addo, the Acting Director for Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission and Site Manager for Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site, then in our discourse, they arose the concern of the Green Ghana Day which was to be commemorated annually on 11th June. In fact, that was gospel to me when got the notification. That’s a great initiative from the government of Ghana, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, and the Forestry Commission!

Just from this moment was a few weeks to the Green Ghana Day. Now, the big question was, How am I going to support this agenda immensely as an individual?

Within these times to the successful observation of the Green Ghana Day was some profound  experiences and lessons that I learned of which I will like to share with you in chronological order:

  1. Request for a partnership letter to bring our organization on board. I fortunate to be the Co-Founder of YOLEG, a youth-led Not for profit organization. I later reached out to my colleagues of which we conclusively accepted to support the initiative within our most efficient means by giving out field laborers, creating social media awareness, and reducing the cost of feeding for participants.
  2. I proposed some stakeholders and o support the agenda. I quickly suggested to The Director for Wildlife Division in my municipality, some stakeholders who may be of urgent help when reached out to. She had to join the Director and her team to these stakeholders to submit partnership letters to them: Bravo! to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Education, Winneba, and Department of Geography Education of the University, as they gave showed the readiness to grace the upcoming event.
  3. Mobilized and Volunteers to participate in the event. I had to quickly design a Google form to recruit Volunteers who will serve as field laborers to help in the planting of the seedlings. This was followed by a virtual meeting for Volunteers to plan on the effective and efficient means of participating in the Green Ghana Day. Working together with my team I was able to bring on board 12 volunteers from the University of Education, Winneba who helped in the planting of 5,000 trees in the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site.
  4. Funds ought to be raised to support feeding and transporting volunteers to the planting site. I was able to work with my other colleagues to mobilize some funds from some of our Associates, the volunteers, and Staff to cater for the feeding and transportation of our volunteers. Every youth in the least possible means can help in the Green Ghana Agenda using these same principles.

My Conclusion

I sincerely applaud the government of Ghana, the Ministry for Lands and Natural Resources, and the Forestry Commission for introducing the annual commemoration of the Green Ghana Day. In fact, I saw some university students, youth-led organizations, and individuals, voluntarily dedicating their time and efforts traveling long distances and digging hard grounds to plant trees, some even to the expense of their lectures. This alarms how the youth is really groaning within for opportunities to engender development in our country, Ghana.

My Recommendations

“Until you dig a hole, you plant a tree, you water it and make it survive, you haven’t done a thing. You are just talking.”

Wangari Maathai

Even though it’s a good attempt to plant trees in my municipality, the next big question is, are there some provisions put in place to monitor the growth of these trees after much labour?

This nagging question ought to be asked again and again especially in areas where rainfall is relatively low, of which Effutu Municipality is no exception.

This calls for continuous monthly, bi-monthly, and quarterly support and Partnership to help water these plants. Youth organizations, cooperate and religious institutions, Municipal assemblies, stakeholders ought to be sensitized to subscribe for monthly partnerships with the regional and district forestry commission to water the trees. The district Ghana water company will be much needed in this regard.

The government should supply adequate equipment to aid in the planting of seedlings.

As an educationist, I will also suggest schools inculcate in curricula activities the habit of nursing seedlings and planting more trees at all levels of education. Planting trees is not a responsibility of some artisan, but rather the corporate responsibility of humankind.

What is the way forward?

Having biodiversity conservatism and restoration at heart, I together with YOLEG will continue to partner with the Wildlife Division of the Forestry Commission Ghana in Effutu Municipality to monitor the growth of these trees in the next year.

YOLEG Sparks to Commemorate World Wetland Day with the Launch of Wetland for Future Generation Campaign.

YOLEG Sparks to Commemorate World Wetland Day with the Launch of Wetland for Future Generation Campaign.

“YOLEG Sparks to Commemorate World Wetland Day with the Launch of Wetland for Future Generation Campaign.

Wetlands are among the most productive life-support systems in the world and are of immense socio-economic and ecological importance to mankind. They are critical for the maintenance of biodiversity and perform a great role in the biosphere. Inland wetlands include marshes, ponds, lakes, fens, rivers, floodplains, and swamps. Coastal wetlands include saltwater marshes, estuaries, mangroves, lagoons, and even coral reefs. Human-made wetlands are; fishponds, rice paddies, and saltpans.

Celebrated annually on 2nd February each year is World Wetlands Day to raise global awareness about the vital role of wetlands for people and our planet. It also marks the date for the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2nd February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea.

Every year World Wetland Day is celebrated with a specific theme to raise awareness about the value of wetlands. This year the theme for World Wetland Day 2021 is “Wetlands and Water”. This year’s theme shines a spotlight on wetlands as a source of freshwater and encourages actions to restore them and stop their loss.

Once again! Youth Legacy Ghana, a youth-led and non-profit organization, situated in the Central Region of Ghana has expressed its robust concern for sustainable wetlands in their country, Ghana.

The youth frontier known for its passionate drive for sustainable biodiversity in the areas of wetlands conservation and restoration is taking a gallant step to commemorate World Wetlands Day 2021 on 2nd February next year in Ghana. Amazingly, Youth Legacy Ghana has initiated the “Wetland for Future Generation Project” a 3-day advocacy campaign that will take place on the 2nd to 5th February 2020 to observe the World Wetlands Day 2021 in Ghana.

Wetland for Future Generation Campaign is conceptualized to conserve and preserve wetlands in Ghana with an initial focus on the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar  Site in Winneba. 

The project is purposed to strategically create awareness on the wise use of wetlands in Ghana. This will involve wetland sensitization programs for targeted groups such as; coastal artisans, indigenes, high school clubs, and associations who are in proximity to the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site in Winneba.

These key agents will be engaged to;

  • Strengthen local participation in wetland conservation of the targeted site.
  • Conduct a clean-up exercise will to remove plastic infiltration along the bank of the Muni-Pomadze Ramsar Site.
  • Organize “My Wetland Essay Competitions” to extend the frontiers of providing sustainable solution ideas on the theme for the day ‘wetlands and water’.

Launching of the “Wetland for Future Generation Project” is a webinar scheduled on the 21st November 2020 on Zoom and Facebook Livestream at 2:00 pm (GMT:00).  Youth Legacy Ghana is calling on all stakeholders both domestic and international institutions, cooperate organizations, civil society organizations, and individuals to partner and support their great initiative to commemorate World Wetland Day 2021 and conserve biodiversity through education. 

YOLEG Named As a Top Partner for the AFRICAN YOUTH SDGs SUMMIT.

YOLEG Named As a Top Partner for the AFRICAN YOUTH SDGs SUMMIT.

The African Youth SDGs Summit is Africa’s largest youth forum on the Sustainable Development Goals. Launched in 2017, the Summit has evolved to bring together a multi-sector coalition of youth, development experts, government and UN entities, NGOs, and the private sector to create the Africa we want together…..

In the year 2018, Youth Legacy Ghana participated massively in the 2nd African Youth SDGs Summit and from hence has become a leading youth-driven organization that contributes to the successful organization of the event.  In the 2020 3rd edition of the event, Youth Legacy Ghana was welcomed as a youth partnering organization working hand-in-hand with other prominent and world-leading organization including; Youth Advocates Ghana, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Population Fund, Millenium Promise Alliance, Melton Foundation, Care International, Action Aid, Oxfam International, United Nations Ghana, Ministry of Planning, International Association of Young Geographers and other prominent institutions. 

YOLEG has received an honorary certificate of Appreciation from the event convener Mr. Emmanuel Ametepey the Executive Director of Youth Advocates Ghana. The appreciation noted the contribution of the YOLEG Family towards the organization of the event. YOLEG welcomes and accepts the recognition given by such a great gathering. We say thank you to the organizers for making us partners of the event.

YOLEG volunteers who are passionate about solving global issues attended the event with impressive numbers and contributed to discussions pertaining to the sustainable development goals. Joining the team led by Mr. Benjamin Edwards the Co-Founder and Program Manager of YOLEG, Ms. Jennifer a (Volunteer), Mr. Attah Agyemang Emmanuel Senior (Volunteer), Ms. Patricia Awauni (Volunteer), and Mr. Adu Mensah Junior the Executive Director of YOLEG.

Following the Summit, YOLEG and her members were able to network with the right organizations which led to the successful organization of the SDGs and Academic Research Conference 2020. A word from our program manager Mr. Benjamin Edwards read “the African Youth SDGs Summit has opened my eyes to understand the urgency from driving new researches, projects and interventions to scale up the achievement of AGENDA 2030 of the Sustainable Development Goals.”

 

YOLEG Executive Advocates for Climate.

YOLEG Executive Advocates for Climate.

Youth Legacy Partners in ‘Youth Take Lead for Climate Action Campaign’

Youth Legacy Ghana (YOLEG) makes a premier step as they partnered in the recent Youth Take Lead for Climate Action Campaign’ which was hosted by Inspire, You Expire Global Foundation (IYEGF) alongside other partner and financing organization; Youth Empowerment Synergy (YES), Civil Society in Development (CISU), 100% for Children, Noble Aid Africa Foundation (NAAF) and Organization for Inclusion and Empowerment (OFIE). As part the partnership, Youth legacy together with OFIE held a ‘Climate Change Radio Advocacy’ at Radio Peace (88.9 MHz) from 4:00pm-4:30 (GMT:00) in Winneba, Central region. The radio advocacy which was purposed on sensitizing the youth on their role toward climate action and targeted at the local people used the local dialect to aid better understanding among the local indigenes. The program hosted four panelists: Benjamin Edwards (Programmes Manager, YOLEG), Kwadwo Frimpong (Volunteer, YOLEG), Sender Kyereme (Volunteer, YOLEG) and Sadock Ofori (Rep, OFIE) who discussed on the meaning of climate change; it causes, effects and predominantly, why and how the average youth should join the quest to combat climate change.

Proceedings from the discussion explained Climate actions as part of the UN SDGs and climate change as the global phenomenon of climate transformation characterized by in the changes in the usual climate of the plate (regarding temperature, precipitation, and wind). Emphasis was made on how human activities is the major driving force of climate change in recent times. Examples of human activities highlighted included burning of fossil fuels such coals, oil and gas, for electricity, heat and transportation, coupled with other practices such as deforestation, incineration, and intensive agriculture, all of which emit greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and eventually increasing global weather conditions. The resultant effects of climate change were also heighted ranging from rising in sea levels, warming atmosphere, flooding, drought, and scarcity of food and energy.

Finally, the panelist highlighted on why and how the youth should participate in the combat for climate change. The youth was identified as been idealistic, innovative, connected, and everywhere and for that matter stands to be a key agent in achieving the SDG 13. They youth were sensitized to help the agenda by speaking up, joining a movement and generally changing their lifestyle.