COP26: Thirty-two young people to represent LWF at climate summit
Online-format ensures broad participation
(LWI) – This year, The Lutheran World Federation’s (LWF) delegation to the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP) is larger than in previous years. It comprises 32 young people from LWF member churches across the globe who join LWF staff to advocate for climate justice from a faith perspective.
Sixteen women and 16 men from all seven regions of the LWF make up the youth delegation. They come from 25 countries and 28 LWF member churches. “Never before have we had such a broad representation of young people across the communion,” says Elena Cedillo, LWF’s Program Executive for Climate Justice. “That is very encouraging for LWF’s climate justice efforts.” Since 2011, the LWF has participated at the COP with youth delegations.
Large parts of the LWF’s program at COP26 will take place in an online format; only a few youths will attend in person. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic and travel restrictions make in-person attendance by delegates in Glasgow, Scotland, very difficult, particularly for the participants from the Global South. Consequently, plenary discussions, gatherings with ecumenical and interfaith partners, and other events will be followed online by most delegates.
Never before have we had such a broad representation of young people across the communion; that is very encouraging for LWF’s climate justice efforts.
Raising the voices from the Global South
“One of LWF’s advocacy goals for COP26 is to raise the voices from the Global South,” underlines Isaiah Toroitich, LWF’s Head of Global Advocacy. “The online format ensures the exchange among delegates from all regions; that is a vital learning experience for all.”
In an online meeting on 13 October, the youth delegates and LWF advocacy staff first met. “The energy and the gifts the young people bring to the table are very encouraging,” says Savanna Sullivan, LWF’s Program Executive for Youth. “They will be a big asset for LWF’s advocacy for climate and intergenerational justice.”
Sullivan emphasizes that these young people have a calling to care for creation and to reflect on this engagement theologically.
In the run-up to COP26, LWF will host several online workshops to build the delegation’s capacity for climate action. They form part of a learning process that begins before the conference, analyzes the proceedings during COP26, and evaluates its outcomes.
Topics of the preparatory workshops include the Paris Agreement and its current implementation status, an outlook on the agenda and priorities of COP26, the main policy demands and talking points of LWF for COP26, and how LWF delegates can engage in negotiations.
LWF youth delegates to COP26
The following persons form part of the LWF’s youth delegation to COP26. Their names are listed in alphabetical order.
- Antonsen, Nora - Church of Norway
- Chun, Sing Long - Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hong Kong
- de Oliveira Schumann, Natan - Evangelical Church of the Lutheran Confession in Brazil
- Dohmann, Romario - Evangelical Church of the River Plate, Argentina
- Domingos, Tsiresy - Lutheran Church in Great Britain
- Gborie, Samuel Sahr - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Sierra Leone
- Gómez Neumann, Francisco Javier - Lutheran Church in Chile
- Granozio, Riccardo Miletto - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Italy
- Hanson, Joshua Austin - Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland
- Huang, Mu-Lin - Lutheran Church of the Republic of China, Taiwan
- Jeppesen, Rikke Høier - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark
- Joel M - The Tamil Evangelical Lutheran Church, India
- Kapira, Erick B. - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania
- Kuhnert, Katarina (Kata) - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
- Lugazia, Rhoda Mutesi Julius - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania
- Magwaza, Khulekani - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Southern Africa
- Martensson, Tova - Church of Sweden
- Martschinke, Anna-Lena - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northern Germany
- Maua, Maro Micah - Kenya Evangelical Lutheran Church
- Montes Chávez, Graciela Estefany - Salvadoran Lutheran Church
- Munankan, Elijah - Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ghana
- Nainggolan, Ernisa Maranatha - Protestant Christian Batak Church, Indonesia
- Pico Salcedo, Jeimy Katherine - Evangelical Lutheran Church of Colombia
- Quito, Nathaly - Evangelical Lutheran Church of Colombia
- Reichel, Joren N. - Protestant Church in the Netherlands
- Rejakanthan, Rebecca Samala - Lutheran Church in Singapore
- Schwarz, Michelle - Lutheran Church of Saxony, Germany
- Srilatha, Potti - Good Shepherd Evangelical Lutheran Church, India
- Taulborg, Marcus - Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark
- Vaikum, Viktor - Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Ingria in Russia
- Welman, Zuzanna - Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland
- Zuniga Keim, Fernanda - Lutheran Church in Chile
By LWF/A. Weyermüller
The LWF participates in the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) which takes place in Glasgow, Scotland, from 31 October to 12 November. This engagement is part of the communion’s ongoing focus to strengthen climate action and advocacy at all levels. Young people are vital agents of change and form the greater part of the LWF’s delegation to COP26.