Seven climate activists across the country tired about the state of Ghana’s environment and concerned about the risks of climate change, moved from Ghana to Istanbul to join 350.org for Global Power Shift.
The aim of this trip which will last a week is to empower ourselves, learn from other countries campaign success stories and challenges, network with other movements and campaigns to get a successful global movement. Of course we aim to return and cause a positive change in the way environmental issues are handled in the country. One thing for sure is we are excited to be part of GLOBAL POWER SHIFT!!!
Reaching the airport on the Monday evening was exciting as some members were meeting others for the first time. A team from Ghana Youth Environmental Movement (GYEM) came to bid us farewell.
At 8:20 pm the plane took flight at the Kotoka International Airport straight to Istanbul; a cool 6-7 hour journey. It was fun meeting other participants at the airport on arrival at the Istanbul Ataturk Airport while we waited for the bus to transport us to the University.
Getting to a land that is recognized for its ancient and religious history was a sight to behold. The state of development got us discussing about the state of our country and how we can get Ghana to look same. The landscapes, the afforestation project that could be seen, a reserve and protected forest in the middle city made us realize people in this land really wanted and knew the effects of climate change. This is because if the people here have forest reserves in the capital, have afforestation projects in the city, great landscaping in the city centre and is still fighting for parks to be managed and not converted to malls; they were surely in for a change from “business as usual” when it come to environmental issues. We indeed enjoyed the wonderful scenery of the skyscrapers and astounding beautification of their environments.
Two members from GYEM are in the Non-violent Direct Campaign and Digital campaign track; two of the major strategies GYEM in Ghana use to achieve its results. Other track lessons some members participated in were Policy, Media and Communication and Creative Arts track.
We finally arrived at the Istanbul Technical University in about 45 minutes where we first did our registration, had breakfast (strange meals) and zoomed to the conference halls to observe the introductions of our tracks.
We missed the opening ceremony anyway which we so badly wanted to be part of; worst of all we kept hearing it was fun.
Well this is just day one, so be expecting more updates from GLOBAL POWER SHIFT in Istanbul. . . !!!