10 Inspiring young activists changing the world
It has often been said that children are the future. The world of tomorrow can only be shaped by the children of today, since they are the ones to inherit the Earth as older generations fade away.
Thus, when the youth of the world are motivated and driven for change and progress, it is certainly a point for celebration. Here are 10 young activists who have started to work for change from a young age and become inspirations for us all:
This 19 year old Swedish climate activist has created history by becoming one of the most outspoken critics of governments all over the globe neglecting the environment and issues of climate change. She started her activism at the young age of 15, when she organised school climate strikes and raised awareness through her speeches on various platforms, including the United Nations. She has been awarded multiple honours and also received nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize.
A 12 year old climate activist from Manipur, India, Licpriya Kangujam is among the youngest activists in the world. She started her activism at the age of 7, by protesting for climate change laws in front of the Indian Parliament house in 2019. She has also attended various United Nations conferences, addressed world leaders and staged movements for climate change awareness.
This 16 year old African-American student has been campaigning tirelessly for diverse representation in school syllabi. At the age of 11, after noticing that most school stories contain white characters, she began the book drive called ‘#1000BlackGirlBooks’, to raise awareness about proper representation of African-Americans in literature. She has gone on to write a biography as well, to ensure her message reaches as far as possible.
This 23 year old Bangladeshi activist started working to tackle climate change, child rights and violence against women from the young age of 12. He started a newspaper called ‘The Monthly Lal Sabuj’ to draw attention to climate issues and went on to receive support from various Bangladeshi activists. He was also chosen to represent Bangladesh in the UN Youth Summit in 2019.
A 15 year old Indian student, Haaziq Kazi is known for his marine activism. He was inspired to save marine life from plastic after watching National Geographic documentaries and soon started the ERVIS Foundation in 2018 to clean plastic waste from oceans. He has also given various speeches on the topic through platforms like TEDx, to garner media attention and raise awareness.
This 18 year old Zimbabwean climate activist has been working for climate justice and youth inclusion since the age of 10. He has been rallying the youth and raising awareness about the impending climate crisis. He has also created the first biogas plant in his community and gained recognition in the United Nations for his work.
17 year old Canadian activist Autumn Peltier started advocating clear water for indigenous communities around the world at the age of 15. She became the ‘Chief Water Protector/Commissioner’ of Anishinabek Nation and has been rising to prominence as a ‘water warrior’ since then. She has been awarded multiple awards for her work and has also addressed the UN General Assembly in 2018.
This 22 year old British activist started her work at the age of 17, when she read a news report about poor women missing school due to the stigma around menstruation and lack of access to sanitary napkins. She then started the #FreePeriods campaign to end period poverty in the UK. Her campaign has now become a huge online movement and resulted in the government pledging to provide free menstrual hygiene products in all schools.Amika George has gone on to receive global recognition for magazines like TIME and The Big Issue.
One of the youngest activists in the world today, 13 year old American activist Genesis Butler began her animal rights activism at the mere age of 6, when she became an ethical vegan. Since then, she has worked constantly to raise awareness and promote the cruelty free, plant-based vegan lifestyle. She has given speeches on platforms like TEDx and has also been honoured by PETA for her work.
After surviving a school shooting in 2018, 18 year old American Emma Gonzalez organised the March for Our Lives along with her schoolmates and other survivors in Washington. This march has since been recreated all over the world to advocate gun control and call for stricter gun restrictions. Gonzalez also led a 6 minute and 20 second silence to commemorate the victims- the exact time it took for the mass shooting to take place.