COY 11 in Paris: a young Ecuadorian with big aspirations

 COY 11 in Paris: a young Ecuadorian with big aspirations

Luis Canelos is one of the participant of COY11 (Eleventh Youth Conference against Climate Change) in Paris and he tells us a little about him, about what comes to do and what are their dreams and expectations with regard to this great event.

Luis is a young man of Kichwa nationality of the Amazon (Ecuador) and came to the COY11 that was developed in Paris, representing the Youth Coalition to Forests that is an initiative that was born in 2011 with the need to transmit through the voices of the young people of the region, the importance of forests and jungles, but also to alert on the consequences that have suffered and can suffer in the future both territories such as the indigenous communities , primarily affected by extractive activities such as mining and deforestation.

The Youth Coalition by Forests is formed by young people from various regions of Ecuador (Amazon, Coast, Galapagos Islands and Mountain Range) that share their experiences from the multicultural reality on the events which have taken place in their territories or cities and carried out joint work, relying on some audiovisual projects as it is “Forest alert: I defend it”, that is a campaign that aims to create awareness on the care of these areas of ecological importance and also sharing personal stories of its members.

The work that has already been done within this initiative, Luis says that have been carried out training workshops in forest policies, encounters with youth representatives of indigenous people and nationalities, as well as with youth environmental organizations.

Something to highlight within the process of this young man in the fight against climate change, was their active participation along with other members of the Youth Coalition in forests in the COY10 and COP20 that were made in Lima (Peru) last year.

These two spaces were very important, as it helped the consolidation of the ideas and allowed them to share the projects and activities in favor of forests in Ecuador, by presenting to young people from several countries of the world.

This participation in the past COY and COP, helped him to Luis to realize their participation in the COY11 and COP21 in Paris, which was supported by the Global Greengrants Found, CEPLAES and Rainforest Norway. The message that sends Luis to all young people is that “this is the time to create abilities, but this is accomplished with actions in the field and participate in open spaces such as these where we can look to things more ambitious” and that is already expressed that generally in the great conference (COP21) the voice of young people remains little heard and taken into account in decisions that are in the climate negotiations.

One of the expectations of Luis is that in the COP21, the document that comes out of the COY11 (called “manifest”) is considered to the greatest extent possible by the great leaders who have in their hands not only the future of this generation, but of the ones that come, highlighting such vital aspects that must be included in the new climate agreement such as intergenerational equity and respect for the rights of indigenous peoples.

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