While all of us want to ensure that our voices are heard by our world leaders about the Future We Want, not everyone can be present at Rio+20 itself. Many of us will be participating virtually, and can participate as – if not more – meaningfully in local action on the themes of Rio+20 in our own communities. Here is a set of avenues for participation, many of which don’t involve getting into the conference itself!
Community level action: Identify sustainable development issues in your community, discuss them with your peers, and take action
UN Habitat: Be a City Changer program
Youth XChange: UNEP & UNESCO’s Sustainable Consumption & Production toolkits can give you many ideas on what to do to take action in your own life and in your community around questions of consumption and production.
UNICEF: Map your community’s environmental issues, organize community roundtables to discuss with community leaders a common vision for The Future We Want, create community art to share the vision, create an action plan to get there, and launch actions in your neighborhood with support from local organizations. For more information, visit UNICEF’s Future We Want Toolkit.
WAGGGS: Consultation guide can help you organize a conversation and training with other young people about sustainable development. WAGGGS also has guides to climate change action that include many of the themes of Rio+20
GEEBiz: Share your great green business idea as a part of the GEE-Biz competition, designed to showcase the green economy that is already being built by young people today.
Rio+YOU: Campaign to raise awareness and get people to take action in their community, leading to Global Day of Action on April 22. Website (under development).
Plant-for-the-Planet: Become a Climate Justice Ambassador by participating in a Plant-for-the-Planet Academy in your country. And if there is none: get in touch and we will help you organize one!
Share your perspectives on sustainable development:
UN DESA Rio Secretariat: Share your voice and support good ideas of others on the official Rio+20 site
Future We Want: Add your image, story, thoughts, or video to tell the world about how you see The Future We Want.
Global Youth Music Contest: Create a song and video that share your thoughts on Rio+20 and sustainable development. Winners will perform at Rio+20.
Connect4Climate: Share photos and videos of sustainable development issues and solutions from your local area on the World Bank Connect4Climate site.
ScenaRIO: A global consultation is taking place to interview thousands of young people. See how you can help or have your voice heard.
Road to Rio+20: Coalition of over 60 partner organizations weaving together a youth-led movement to realize the potential of the Earth Summit 2012. Supporting Rio+YOU and MyCity+20, but also engaging in online mobilization efforts through our comms channels.
Participate in Rio+20 or local simulations:
Rio+20s: They have created a fantastic participation guide that can walk you through the many ways you can participate in the formal process
MyCity+20: Organize model UN debates on the issues of sustainable development, to raise awareness and get young people to develop community-based action plans. See what students in Paris are doing here.
UNEP: With the TUNZA youth program, UNEP will be bringing talented youth leaders to Rio in early June for a TUNZA summit
Youth Blast: Whether you can join the official negotiations or not, you can participate in the Youth Blast, in person in Rio or virtually.
Video Conferences: Earth Child International will be organizing a series of video conferences between children worldwide to share their perspectives with each other, both before and during Rio+20
Official Youth Delegates: You may be able to speak to your government about the importance of having youth and children as a part of the official youth delegation. UN Youth Program, European Youth Forum, and other groups are working to encourage more governments to bring official youth delegates.
Regional Preparatory Meetings: Whether or not you are accredited to be a part of the official Rio+20 conference, you can participate in regional preparatory meetings with civil society that UNDESA and UNEP are organizing.