An army of Greta Thunbergs: one mother’s mission

An army of Greta Thunbergs: one mother’s mission

Do you think you’re making as many
enemies as friends doing all this? Oh, loads of enemies,
it’s absolutely delicious. Come on, let’s go. I love it. With the global climate emergency now firmly in the headlines and children engaged in environmentalism like never before, attention has spread to
what the world’s schools can do to better equip the leaders of tomorrow. We children are doing this to wake
the adults up. She never loses hope,
she doesn’t give up. Melanie Harwood is an education entrepreneur
with a grand plan to revolutionise teaching. Her organisation, eduCCate Global, is spreading
the United Nations climate change curriculum globally. Our mission is to get an eduCCate Global
climate change teacher accredited by the UN into every classroom, every school, everywhere
throughout the world. Teachers throughout the world are
sharing this on their social media, it’s just spreading everywhere. I followed Melanie on a trip to the oil-rich Middle East to see if her plan holds water. But my journey began in far more ordinary surroundings. Oh my God! So, I’m as mad as a box of frogs. I’d better put my bloody seat belt on
or else I’m going to be in a lot of trouble, aren’t I? We really want to make sure that we’re
delivering a curriculum globally, that is preparing this next generation
for what’s coming. Does she ever stop?
– No. Even at bed you say, I’m just going to
sleep and then you lie down and then I come in, and you’re still in your phone like
messaging people, or something. Are you creating an army of Greta Thunbergs? Yes, please. These are the lavender fields
in Hitchin. This is a result of climate change. They couldn’t farm this at all,
the soil is just not viable but it works for lavender. Come on then, let’s go, let’s go. Bring the dog. Climate change was the elephant in the room. – Yeah. So, I had the idea of creating a cross-
curricular climate curriculum but I knew how hard it is to
get into schools. I cannot look my daughter in the eye
and not have done anything. The more you educate every child,
every teacher, those children … Teachers don’t just teach children,
they teach indirectly, they teach entire communities. What do you think about Greta Thunberg? I think she’s a great
influence on people and I saw on Instagram people saying how people have been
copying her but in a way that’s a good thing because we all need to be more like her. I’ve never had somebody message me this much because you just message me like crazy … – You are the one who messages me! No, you’re lying. – 67 I had! No, not me. – You were harassing me! No … I might. If you don’t get under people’s skin … – Well, they can ignore you, can’t they? Yeah. And if you keep harassing people,
for want of a better word, Then you’re harder to dismiss. Absolutely. We need those leaders to come and help
us get out into the world. The United Arab Emirates might seem an odd
destination to find such a leader. Human rights issues are widely reported and
personal freedoms restricted but as an autocracy, it is perhaps well placed to
set long-term sustainability goals. The reason why we’re here on this
morning is to plant trees together. I know Greta Thunberg is out there
championing the cause and staying out of school. I want our children to be in school. I want our children to learn
from the adults around them that they took care for the environment. When everything is falling apart,
every one of us have to pick up the pieces. Asha Alexander is the principal of the
kindergarten starters, an international
primary school of over 5,000 students based in Dubai. I joined Asha along with 40 local
organisations at a tree-planting event she had organised in the desert. It’s sort of an odd thing, isn’t it?
Planting trees in the desert. Surely it can’t support a forest. Nobody’s tried and I’m going to try. It’s not about the tree planting.
If that seed is planted in their minds, in their hearts and they’re moved,
then there’s plenty of hope out there. I guess before she arrived,
children probably didn’t feel they had any power. That’s great. One, two, three! Trees! Back at Asha’s school, a familiar face arrives. Good morning! Hello! Welcome to Dubai. It’s lovely and warm, isn’t it? It is lovely and warm, who knew? Who knew? We’ve never seen each other before. Good morning, everybody! The reason we are here is to be working together,
building a new curriculum for the world. Caesalpinia pulcherrima. We need to find out if this
tree has any medic inal qualities to it because, I mean, really the plants
are medicine, aren’t they? They are going to help us fix our world. Melanie’s here with the delegation of education specialists from a progressive London borough. This is the world leader,
it’s the first school in the world that every teacher in every classroom is an
eduCCate Global climate change teacher. We’ve come to Dubai to bring this magic
back to Hammersmith and Fulham. We want to take it back to the UK
and then globally. A lot of us tend to waste water,
how do we save water? I’d heard a great deal so far about
planting trees and avoiding plastics but I was keen to see children
being taught not what to think but how to think. The robotics lab. Good morning, everybody! Good morning! There’s nothing worse. That’s amazing! Who’s next?
What’s next? It’s amazing! Absolutely amazing. That can print food? Yes. Amazing, this is incredible. If everyone in the world can contribute with us,
we can change the world. Wow. Has everybody here
heard of Greta Thunberg? Yes. All of you? Yes. And has she inspired all of you? Yes. So, do you think that you would have the
courage that she has to stand up? I hope so, I hope so. Thank you very, very much everybody. I mean, literally what we’ve taught our kids, I think we wouldn’t have learned in the next 20, 30 years. The choice of being
ignorant was what I had chosen and now she’s educating me, I didn’t know what
carbon footprint was … Every student in KGS is a Greta in some way. You’re going to make me cry,
you better stop now. The most profound thing for me to do
was meeting the parents. Parents telling me that their
children have changed their lives and their own understanding of climate
change and then the parents telling that they’ve done the climate change course. I was totally blown away. Dubai, of course, itself is an interesting
place to come, right? It has one of the biggest carbon
footprints of all cities across the world. You see the traffic on the roads, you see the air-conditioning units, you see the indoor ski slope … We are not sustainable.
None of us. No country in the developed world is sustainable. You know, we are writing cheques
that our planet can’t cash. So, to be honest, for us
to have the hump and say, ‘Well, how dare Dubai?’, how dare we? I think we all have to learn from each
other and we all have to buck up. So, he’s very important? This is Melanie Harwood.
– Good morning, pleased to meet you. We just can’t wait to tell you all
that we’ve been doing. The next day, Emirati education dignitaries arrived for a
Climate Change conference. Kicking things off, 202 children singing
the school’s new climate crisis anthem. I need to take you with me to COP25 so that you can meet Greta Thunberg. We will have to ask your mum. Do you think those people
are going to listen to you? Do you think they’re going to listen to you? Why should they listen to you? Just because if they
don’t listen to me, the climate change will not stop. OK. What is it that you can do? Spread my message … Spread your message … how? How are you going to spread your message? By telling the message all over the world. And going to the Philippines
and taking about this. Philippines? OK. So they can also know. Are you aware about anything that you
saw in the Philippines which you are worried about? Were they cutting the trees, were they
wasting water in the Philippines … ? Did you see anything like that? I saw my sister shooting a water gun at me. A water gun needs water,
and Donna wasted water on my T-shirt. She wasted water on your T-shirt?
That’s sad. Say trees! Trees! We talked a lot about finding
the next Greta Thunberg, there seems to be a
lot of pressure suddenly on this six-year-old. I mean, at this school, every
child is a Greta Thunberg here. I don’t think you quite realise … I think that the schools where we have
these eduCCate Global climate change teachers … amazing things are happening. We’ve got to go back home and go and see
what’s going on there. It’s pretty wild, it’s so exciting. I’m still left wondering how much of the hype is hyperbole but the enthusiasm is infectious. Look at the sun going down in that city! That skyline! Melanie’s disruptive approach, a far cry
from the slow-moving bureaucracy normally associated with organisations
as large as the UN, is gathering momentum. In the face of such a fundamental crisis,
I can’t help but hope she succeeds. Looking around at this skyline in this
metropolis in the desert, I mean so many of the issues that we do
face are here, right? We have the desert, we have the rising sea levels,
we have the use of fossil fuels … We are here and effectively all of our issues and angst
started in the Middle East and that’s where we’re going to fix it. Perhaps there’s a reason for this madness, perhaps the reason we’ve come
back here is to start here to heal that wound. Now that I see what is possible
when you have an army of Greta Thunbergs, you can achieve anything.

Comments (85)

  1. Those who say that climate change doesn't exist are being understood as the flat-earthers that they are As the people who deny the link between smoking and cancer

  2. So what? Even our goverments don't do anything! Nothing s gonna change

  3. Keep posting videos The guardian……

  4. bloody hell i hate you so much now. burn that witch #

  5. one day when you walk in your stone age sandals you will regret that climate change religion but than it will be to late

  6. 4:30 There's a reason no one has tried to plant tiny plastic sheathed saplings in exposed desert sand. You're wasting your time… and littering.

  7. Global warming has always been taught at school. This a utter attention seeking bull.


  9. Climate deniers can be the first to move. Areas that are in trouble

  10. The only person who is doing something is MrBeast

  11. You can't plant trees in a desert it doesn't rain you're wasting resources.

  12. Definition of stupid: Flying from the UK to Dubai to learn about combating climate change

  13. Climate isn't only about the weather. It can be your immediate environment. Before you jump in with both feet, pay attention to all your others basic needs and human freedoms you will be waiving. Voluntary in the name of "climate change" (formally known as Global warming, but that didn't work either) global addenda's don't necessarily have your best interest in mind.

  14. is she actually educating driving around in a SUV?





  16. The wasted water is nonsense considering it's never left earth. But the climate change is a real deal we have to deal with despite this thornbutt nonsense.

  17. How many climate skeptics does it take to change a light bulb?
    First off, the light bulb is not burned out, and even if it was,
    it is not MY fault so why should I change it?
    Besides, it is far too expensive for me to change a light blub.
    Why are light Liberals always trying to get me to change my bulb?
    Also, we are not taking into account all of the wonderful benefits of living in the dark!
    Oh, and you don't see the Chinese changing THEIR light bulbs do you? Well do you?

  18. Pleasantly surprised by the sensible science-supported comments ? Best love and luck to the lovely kids.

  19. This is great and all but it's not gonna work in UK schools where they're having to crowd fund for school supplies and where many kids are living in poverty having to rely on food banks. Kids won't care about Climate change much when they're having to worry about where their going to get their next meal from. Conservative austerity needs to be stopped

  20. She wasn't even planning in wearing a seatbelt… Pfft

  21. It kinda makes sensewhy Dubai and other oil-based countries are the first ones switching to green energies and climate policies. Once their oil reserves start to run out they'll be the first ones out of business. This only proves countries will take climate change seriously only for economic reasons

  22. Wake up in the US: In the Trump/ Betsy DeVos era it is essential that we hold the feet of our local school boards to the fire to bring this narrative to kids. Think globally, act LOCALLY.

  23. One of hers bad enuff…?we don't need more?plus most if not all our weather nowadays is man made/ influanced anyways…..

  24. Yikes! Just… YIKES!!!

  25. i don't like the idea that everyone acts like Greta did all of this and i s the first one to do this, it isn't true its everyone who makes a change

  26. Plants need carbon to breath.

  27. Very, very cool! Thank you! I am 65 and from the USA and am so very sorry for being one of those people who have contributed to our climate problem by driving a car, using plastics sometimes when there is no alternative. I feel helpless in how to change this momentum. Thank you for helping!

  28. Hmmmm, it's a little creepy listening to children sing a Michael Jackson song and then listen to someone refer to his (10:21) "sensitivity and realisation".

  29. What a bs… None of this matter. Do you think that there can be a real change by these tiny steps? Do you think the people that can actually make the decisions actually care? The bs was obvious by the lack of action plan from one if the leading economies in Europe, Germany, which even after bs-ing about Greta went and gave two [email protected]#& about the environment… The result: a policy that is a freaking joke.

  30. Religious indoctrination

  31. This makes me kind of sick. Adults using children to make themselves look better without actually doing anything…

  32. howdareyoumemeface.jpeg

  33. pay attention. greta isn't a leader of tomorrow; she's a leader of today.

  34. planting trees in sand, wtf is wrong with you

  35. Dubai can go suck an expired loaf of bread. Stop pushing yourself on to me as a modern society that wants innovation and diversity.

    It’s a plastic man made piece of land that has no culture and treats it’s work force like trash.

  36. “You and I are very much alike. Archaeology is our religion, yet we have both fallen from the pure faith. Our methods have not differed as much as you pretend. I am but a shadowy reflection of you. It would take only a nudge to make you like me. To push you out of the light.”

  37. How old are these kids? Their English is incredible for their age.

  38. An obese is more responsible for climate change so is a person driving around in a "luxury SUV(Mercedes)" which is likely to consume more fuel than an ordinary SUV, so more pollution.
    Hypocrisy 101.

  39. All these climate activists always fly all over the world with no regard for their own carbon footprint and lecture everybody else about reducing carbon output. Very ironic !!!! I'm yet to see a climate activist that practices what they preach.

  40. why so many downvotes?
    i know polarizing topic blablabla…
    but seriously can u explain? would be nice

  41. Либерасты

  42. That 'Education Entrepreneur' is scary.

  43. nobody's ever tried planting a tree in the desert? lol?
    Let's try to create a science-based fight against climate change, shall we?

  44. Oh deal. Cloning Eva Braun's granddaughter is never going to end well is it.

  45. So the UN keeps hunting children to th is indoctrination and religion!

  46. Weird corporate mentality of these people… how do we create the next Greta sounds a lot like how do we create the next Bill Gates. Just foster critical thinking and knowledge about the state of the world and see what happens, you can't force it.

  47. They need to realize that the United States is 15% of the emissions. The mission has to be India and China first. Sorry guys but if every country went zero emissions it really will not be enough to stop this issue. I honestly feel it is not at all as bad as they are saying. Greta has been propped up by big money and her parents are pushing her into the fire while she has some serious medical issues. To pull her from school and others is horrible as well.

  48. Hooray for Hollywood ! Parts everybody ! Action ! No costumes ,matching uniforms.Arms straight down to the side! feet together !

  49. That’s right let’s indoctrinate children … because it’s too difficult to convince adults

  50. This looks like a religion.

  51. I am 16, I use to be believe climate change was a crisis, then I read the science. If this was about science they would have pushed for nuclear long ago and it wouldn't be lead by a bunch of indoctrinated kids.

  52. United Arab Emirates, one of the worlds leading oil exporters, give me a break.

  53. Surely the dog is an unnecessary waste of resources !

  54. Unnecessary trip to Dubai ! ! !

  55. whiteman's burden all over again.

  56. So many layers of deceit. I love it. Like in Breaking Bad… We're the bad guys

  57. Carbon Dioxide is killing the trees. Save the trees from Carbon!!!

  58. This lady makes me want to deny anthropogenic climate change so bad!

    Anyhow, congratulations to "every child." Stay in school. Become a scientist, not an activist

  59. This is child abuse on a global scale. It's beyond evil.

  60. I want to see these Greta followers go to Russia and China.

  61. The media has found a ratings booster —- for now.

  62. How come they chose Dubai? Their government is among the least progressive and most backwards in the world. Most of the sheiks don't care about climate change, women's empowerment, or human rights. They simply present themselves as progressive to gain global support while pushing backwards, non-innovative, hypocritical, and frankly harmful policies and projects.

  63. No, overpopulation is the real "elephant in the room."

  64. Watch ‘the great global warming swindle’ to really educate yourself about anthropogenic climate change

  65. She has so much energy

  66. I want the kids to plant trees at home. So they experience how hard it is to grow a tree

  67. High hopes of these little girls in UAE…

  68. "the climate crisis is not just about the environment. It is a crisis of human rights, of justice, and of political will. Colonial, racist, and patriarchal systems of oppression" – greta thunberg

  69. Ah, still promoting the inbred member of Swedish nobility.

  70. Why are ppl so threatened by Greta? she is a child lmaoooo maybe they need to re-evaluate themselves

  71. Greta's mother needs to be prosecuted for abuse.

  72. Crazy,crazy people……leave our kids alone.

  73. Climate Change CC 33

  74. The role of youth is crucial in finding innovative approaches to achieve the SDGs. Youth have the power to make a difference. Kudos to the school, which fosters such individuals. Each one of us should make an effort and take whatever action we can.

  75. changing should start by yourself # all the best

  76. What is the climate change course the parents did called?

  77. Kudos to The Kindergarten starters school! If everybody as one take stand and try to end most of the climate changes that are occurring, this world would be a safer place to live on.

  78. I guess she hasn't heard the head of the UN Climate Accords speech that was given at the UN in 2016, when she told a group of her colleagues, that, "Climate Change isn't about the Climate, it is about changing the ideology of the USA, from Capitalism, which the USA has been under for over 150 years, to Socialism"! So, the UN along with a Socialist dictator can take over the USA and trash the Constitution so that the UN can enforce their own laws on American citizens!

  79. These people talk about Greta but do not listen carefully to her nor the thousands of climate activists in the Global South. Capitalism and dreams of infinite economic growth are the root cause of climate change. Harwood should stop with her neo-imperialist agenda of trying to tell everyone the right way to educate children around the world and listen more to other examples of green education. Why doesn't she take a look at the way hundreds of indigenous communities teach their kids to respect nature?

  80. Environmental Socialism and end to Patriarchal rule is the true means.

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