Durban gears up for COY7

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Durban - More African youngsters are likely to attend the Conference of the Youth (COY7) being held on home soil, just days before the start of the COP17.

The COY7 will be held at the University of KwaZulu-Natal's Howard College from November 25-27. Last year, over 400 young people from over 40 different countries attended COY6 in Cancun, Mexico.

Youth from around the world can expect a bigger platform to engage on climate change issues in ways that appeal to them the most - games, shows, a mixed media exhibition of posters and music.

This year, delegates can also expect to see carbon- neutral artefacts and models made from recycled materials. It is also said that the famous Parlotones - a carbon neutral band - will perform.

The COY7, simply put, unites passionate youth to exchanges ideas about environmental issues and form partnerships to help deal with climate change.

The youth will learn new skills and have the opportunity to network with their peers from around the world.

It is also hoped that collaborative efforts by the youth across the world will reduce the carbon footprint - and even influence policy change and legislature in reducing hazardous industrial and domestic waste.

Jabu Ngema, an organiser at COY7, told BuaNews that almost 375 youth have registered so far.

"There is still space available for the youth to register, we are looking at 500 as the cut-off point," said Ngema.

He explained that the content of the conference will be varied and delegates will have a choice as to which session they will attend.

"There will be opening speeches on every day and education around climate change will be the focus in the different workshops," said Ngema.

After the end of COY7, the venue will be used by civil society. They will hold talks and also recap on the important issues raised everyday at COP17.