Sustainability and I

During the coronavirus outbreak, the global community has shown how it can take action in a time of crisis. Everyone has a role to play, and when we work together, even small actions can help overcome big challenges, like climate change.

As part of UNICEF's Youth Mediathon 2020, a group of young content creators from Nigeria, India, Romania, Australia, USA and the Philippines were challenged to reimagine a greener planet for every child.

Watch this video, developed by Vandita Sariya, Alex Draghia, Nour Rajha, Lachlan Akhtarkhavari, Sophia Paez, Adamu Abubakar, Vani Joshi and Loyd Doron, with the support of their mentors, Becky McOwen-Banks and Sam Waterton.


Animation created by the Youth Mediathon participants

Adamu Abubakar is a creative writer from Nigeria who loves to read and create content that engage and inspire readers beyond words. He writes in at least three languages and he cares a lot about education.

"I think we all deserve an improved educational system in our countries. I have previously worked with some NGOs in that regards. Personally, I'm an advocate of the UN's Sustainable Development Goal 4. I have also written poems and a few op-ed articles about the state of education today."

Lachlan Akhtarkhavari is a 17 year old photographer and digital Artist from Australia who often shares his work on social media. He wants to continue to create images with significant meaning behind them, in the hopes to create discourse surrounding topics he's passionate about. These images can be found on his Instagram account.

"I have a passion for creating meaningful discourse through the art of storytelling and photography and have a strong belief that images can tell stories words can't, and that combined they have the power to create incredible change."

Loyd Doron is a 20 years old video creator with a passion for filmmaking based in Philippines, and he recently won an international award for his work. Growing up he devoted his time to advocate for keeping the environment clean, from his school to his own home, organizing a small group of youth in his neighborhood and leading clean-ups almost every weekend. 

"I hope that one day, my passion for making films and inspiring others with my unique storytelling ability will lead me to the big screen, where I will be able to share this passion with others across the whole globe."

Alex Draghia is a U-Report ambassador from Romania and a young climate activist in the Fridays for Future movement. As a Young Advocate, he likes to get involved in as many projects as possible, those he feels really attracted to are: Active involvement of youth in the decision-making process, Climate Change, and Gender Equality. Check out his blog on Voices of Youth.

"There is nothing more unique to me and nothing more important than helping your community grow, helping those around you in any possible way, shape or form."

Vani Joshi is a content creator from India who studies her Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics and Instrumentation while writing as a freelance. About a year ago, she launched her own blog where she creates content about sustainability and low waste living. She created a platform called One Little Step to talk about sustainability and create awareness among the youth.

"I care about sustainability and climate change. I advocate for low waste living, sustainable fashion and action against climate change. My social media platforms are awareness oriented and I am working towards involving maximum people in my initiatives."

Sophia Paez is a Manila-based illustrator and animator that uses both digital and traditional techniques. She creates her own worlds, taking inspiration from mythology and things she sees in her everyday life. Aside from running an art account on Instagram, she has contributed several of her designs to local youth organizations.

"I feel strongly about the preservation of Philippine landmarks and the local environment. I have grown to love the magnificent sights my country has to offer, often featuring them in my art. However, irresponsible tourism has led to the slow decay of many of these places.  I created a series of illustrations to show what would happen if the local government failed to regulate the area’s overdevelopment, and shared it online to raise awareness on the issue."

Vandita Sariya is a 23 year old content creator from India who often switches between writing articles, making cartoons, performing poetry and making movies on SDGs and other issues that she finds relevant. She makes cartoons on various issues including environment and democracy, that she shares on her Instagram account.

"Communicating is important but communicating effectively is crucial. Communicating digitally is easier but is equally challenging with censors, fake news and a constant barrage of content. I use all kinds of media at my disposal. I believe this is an age of integrated media and a message can spread in any form possible. So, I take to all available platforms to point out the problems."

Nour Rajha is a Syrian-American college student majoring in Biology and interested in Neuroscience and Environmental Science. Her background in content creation mainly consists of video making and writing, and has created numerous other videos for personal projects and school projects. She has also recently started an environmental based Instagram page where she shares information about environmental issues, documentaries, and organizations/ brands that are trying to help the environment.

"An issue that I care about deeply is environmental health, mainly related to single use waste and pollution. This is a great issue because it is greatly harming wildlife and is changing the dynamics of the planet. This issue has come to the point were is is now harming people as well. There is plastic in the fish we eat and there are synthetic fibers from clothing being found in rainwater."

Animation created by the Youth Mediathon participants