Join Coventry’s Citizens Assembly on climate change

“As COP26 is over, I wanted to take a moment to celebrate one project and invite you to join the start of another,” writes Grapevine community organiser Jess for today’s blog post.

“Climate change will make a difference to everybody on the planet in the coming years. But very few of us feel that we can help to address the challenge. We may have important opinions or possible solutions, but how can our ideas be heard by the people making the big decisions?

A climate change protest of young people holding cardboard signs and chanting outside a large brown government building. Image by Callum Shaw on Unsplash
Credit: Callum Shaw on Unsplash

“To get the voices of everyday people like you and me heard at COP26, a Global Assembly was formed. The assembly is an accurate snapshot of humanity from countries around the world. Its members were found by organisations connected to their local communities and put forward for random sortition (like a lottery) to create the final 100.

“Grapevine volunteered our services when the Global Assembly’s virtual pin landed in our backyard in Wyken, Coventry in September.

“It made perfect sense to use our experiences of shifting power to get a local person their seat at one of the world’s most important tables.

A group of people from Wyken were recruited to the Assembly and a second sortition process selected our participant, Sanjay Jagatia. Over the past month Sanjay has been learning about the environment alongside other Global Assembly members around 99 other places around the world.

“He then took part in deliberations and recommendations with his team from Chad, Morocco, Nigeria and Turkey. Their recommendations were presented to COP26 on it’s opening day, attracting attention from delegates such as Nicola Sturgeon who took part in the presentation.

UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres said: “The Global Citizens’ Assembly for COP26 is a practical way of showing how we can accelerate action through solidarity and people power.”

An illustration by Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash of the Earth surrounded by a dark blue sky
Credit: Elena Mozhvilo on Unsplash

“COP26 is over but important decisions are still being made and those commitments must be turned into action. It is vital that everyday people have routes to share their insight with decision makers.

“We will host a Local Assembly using a toolkit created by the Global Assembly team. The outcome will be shared via the Global Assembly in their final report, we’d also like to host a local sharing for council departments and local organisations to help them in their planning.

“Who knows, there might even be a solution that we can make happen locally! As Greta Thunberg says: “When enough people come together then change will come and we can achieve almost anything. So instead of looking for hope – let’s start creating it.”

Would you like to be part of this local assembly on climate change?

We are looking for people from anywhere in the city to organise the event with us and also inviting people to take part in the assembly conversations.

Contact Jess to get involved or if you’d like to know more. Email or call her on 07989 395 446.