Global Climate Youth Conference COY13 in Bonn, Germany

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Bonn: Conference of Youth (COY13) for Climate Change takes place each year before the Conference of Parties (COP), organized by United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)) and is hosted by youth organizations of the COP host country.

For 2017, COY13 was managed by youth organizations from Germany.  It was a three-day event from 2nd to 4th November.  Around 1300 young people from 114 countries united to present the voice of youth for the Climate Change negotiations.  The aim of COY is to give young people a platform to share skills, connect and be part of a movement towards a more sustainable society.

The Brahma Kumaris youth delegation included, Stephanie (Austria), Diana, Daksh, Manish (Germany), Juan (Canada),) and Christophe (France). We had the opportunity to be part of the Wellbeing Team, organizing activities around health within the official program of COY13 and were provided three rooms.

• The “Inner Space Room”, designated specifically for silence time, meditation and prayers.

• The “Sustainable Activism Room” designated for workshops related with personal development and climate change and

• The “Active Wellbeing Room” for yoga, stretching, tai-chi dancing etc.

Juan conducted the closing appreciation exercise, for the organizing team of around 50 volunteers, which included a small briefing on sacred activism, inner well-being and hope.  A powerful meditation ended the exercise making it one of the most beautiful moments of the entire COY13.

Brahma Kumaris main contribution was to assist in creating and coordinating the Well-being area where four workshops were presented by Stephanie, Manish and Juan.  B K Christophe and Daksh presented the BK Environment Initiative and the India One project. B K Diana displayed her beautiful artwork based on the 17 UN Sustainable

Development Goals.

Highlights from Day1

Proceedings of 2nd November, began with full energy, in spite of the cold winter morning.  The slogan of this COY was “Talanoa Mada”, which means “Let’s talk”.

B K Adriana (Coordinator education and Youth at UNFCCC) said climate change is a critical challenge. She added, “Addressing climate change is protecting people” and described the participants as global climate champions.

Two workshops were presented:

•Hummingbird: Sharing and caring, our responsibility for the planet.  This was about personal empowerment and inner resilience in times of transition.

• Mudras, an ancient ‘finger yoga technique’ from India. Many participated in these beautiful and colorful activities.

Highlights from Day 2

On 3rd Nov., Brahma Kumaris conducted short guided meditations programs at Inner Space, which gave an opportunity for the participants to relax, focus their energy and find a connection with themselves. Ten meditation sessions of 15 to 20 minutes each over the three days period were conducted for their benefit. A 90-minute discussion session on “Mind, brain and Meditation” was also carried out for the active well-being of the participants.

Highlights from Day 3

The workshop Sequoia was conducted about deep sustainability and spirituality, where participants explored different ways to change the world through the lens of spirituality. They learned practical solutions, such as eating well by following a vegetarian or vegan diet, and by living simply.

B K Juan participated in YOUNGO (the official youth constituency at UNFCCC) working groups to help draft two documents.  One was the opening ceremony statement from YOUNGO at COP23 and the other was the schedule of questions for Patricia Espinosa during the Youth day at COP.

Around 1300 young people from 114 countries united to present the voice of youth for the Climate Change negotiations.  The aim of COY is to give young people a platform to share skills, connect and be part of a movement towards a more sustainable society.

The Brahma Kumaris youth delegation included, Stephanie (Austria), Diana, Daksh, Manish (Germany), Juan (Canada),) and Christophe (France). We had the opportunity to be part of the Wellbeing Team, organizing activities around health within the official program of COY13 and were provided three rooms.

•*  The “Inner Space Room”, designated specifically for silence time, meditation and prayers.

*• The “Sustainable Activism Room” designated for workshops related with personal development and climate change and

• * The “Active Wellbeing Room” for yoga, stretching, tai-chi dancing etc.

Juan conducted the closing appreciation exercise, for the organizing team of around 50 volunteers, which included a small briefing on sacred activism, inner well-being and hope.  A powerful meditation ended the exercise making it one of the most beautiful moments of the entire COY13.

Brahma Kumaris main contribution was to assist in creating and coordinating the Well-being area where four workshops were presented by Stephanie, Manish and Juan.  B K Christophe and Daksh presented the BK Environment Initiative and the India One project. B K Diana displayed her beautiful artwork based on the 17 UN Sustainable

Development Goals.

Highlights from Day1

Proceedings of 2nd November, began with full energy, in spite of the cold winter morning.  The slogan of this COY was “Talanoa Mada”, which means “Let’s talk”.

B K Adriana (Coordinator education and Youth at UNFCCC) said climate change is a critical challenge. She added, “Addressing climate change is protecting people” and described the participants as global climate champions.

Two workshops were presented:

Hummingbird: Sharing and caring, our responsibility for the planet.  This was about personal empowerment and inner resilience in times of transition.

Mudras, an ancient ‘finger yoga technique’ from India. Many participated in these beautiful and colorful activities.

Highlights from Day 2

On 3rd Nov., Brahma Kumaris conducted short guided meditations programs at Inner Space, which gave an opportunity for the participants to relax, focus their energy and find a connection with themselves. Ten meditation sessions of 15 to 20 minutes each over the three days period were conducted for their benefit. A 90-minute discussion session on “Mind, brain and Meditation” was also carried out for the active well-being of the participants.

Highlights from Day 3

The workshop Sequoia was conducted about deep sustainability and spirituality, where participants explored different ways to change the world through the lens of spirituality. They learned practical solutions, such as eating well by following a vegetarian or vegan diet, and by living simply.

B K Juan participated in YOUNGO (the official youth constituency at UNFCCC) working groups to help draft two documents.  One was the opening ceremony statement from YOUNGO at COP23 and the other was the schedule of questions for Patricia Espinosa during the Youth day at COP.