Today my friend Abundance of Creation challenged me to participate in the gratitude challenge. I had seen her post earlier but didn’t read it due to limited time. So when my night time bundle became active I read her post on Facebook. I was surprised to see my name at the end of the paragraph after reading the following:

I nominate Ife Piankhi and Birikiti Pegram to do the GRATITUDE CHALLENGE listing 3 things daily for 7 days that you are thankful for and nominating 2 people each day to do the Challenge.

Wow what a challenge! I wanted to start tomorrow but then I thought what else am I doing? why not invest some time reflecting on my weekend in Gulu.

1. I’m grateful for the opportunity to have meet and have conversations with students from Gulu,  Kitgum & Lira who were participating in the Annual Youth Climate Change Competition. They were tasked with creating presentations using Visual Art, Drama, Music and Dance, Science to speak about Climate Change and how it affects them. The presentations were diverse and entertaining.

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There were stories of village women being sensitized to the impact of climate change by their cutting down of trees to make charcoal. A painting depicting a depleted earth took 20 minutes to paint during a Live Art Challenge led by Gulu artist Ivan (18), who also provided the back drop paintings. We played games and had conversations on the ways forward for them as young people and future leaders of Uganda. I even challenged them to create a solar panel using recycled material.  What I enjoyed the most however was the young women in the audience eventually coming forward to speak their minds because usually its the boys who have the courage and confidence to speak up.

2. I am grateful to United Youth Entertainment (UYE) who provided judges for the competition and logistical support.  Winners of best student film ‘A Cry for Help’ at this years Uganda Film Festival. Their feedback to the competitors was constructive and optimistic.

3. I am grateful to my children for their consistent support and love. I enjoy coming home to them.

However it must be said even though this is a gratitude post, the Global North needs to reduce its massive carbon emissions which is the major driver for the exceleration of climate change. The impact on the Global South’s weather patterns is immense. Lets start putting reduction of carbon emissions, into strategies for food security. Rather than the introduction of Agri -business and GMO seeds. I would also be thankful to the Global North for more support of renewable sources of energy rather than the building of dams and burning of fossil fuels in Africa. We only have one earth, lets preserve it.

Crazy Days: composition by Ife Piankhi produced by DJ Nesta featuring Blessed Son. Speaking on a tree less planet.

Posted in Activism