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Has International Youth Day any relevance to young people here in Britain?

Creating the International Youth Day window at Fair Trader

Has International Youth Day any relevance to young people here in Britain? We think so, and so does Beth Dugdale, an art teacher at Archbishop Holgate’s School in York. It was the main theme in her Year 7 Art Club.

The children brainstormed ideas which they felt passionate about and which will be very important in their future. They focused on the environment, and the idea of BUILDING A BETTER FUTURE, from the need to recycle and upcycle to the use of materials in buildings.

Here at Fair Trader, we want to thank Beth for displaying the children’s work in our window and we are keen to celebrate 21 years of International Youth Day. This year’s theme is particularly relevant for Fairtrade – Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health.

The Fairtrade ethos mirrors the global movement to protect the planet and feed its inhabitants in a sustainable way, and this cannot happen without the participation of young people. Increasingly, the world’s youngsters call to global consumers and businesses to wholeheartedly integrate sustainability into their decision-making. It is now well-known that unchecked economic growth, globalised supply chains and mass consumerism all threaten to outstrip the Earth’s capacity, and that the results of climate change are a stark reality.

Here in Britain, we have seen the younger members of our communities continue to adopt both conventional and unconventional methods to contribute to environmental awareness, care and protection. They have already begun mobilising their peers on social media and other online platforms to debate and advocate for better environmental protection. Whether you agree or disagree with these actions is neither here nor there. But what we can agree on is that the youth of today face different barriers and challenges to prosperity, contentment and stability depending in which part of the world, or which part of a country, they live in. The predictions are gloomy, and youngsters are going to face environmental pressures more extreme than the world has faced before.

Fair Trader, August 2021

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