Global Action Plan's role is to bring together wide ranges of people, getting to the root causes and creating solutions that meet an existential challenge
Consumerism as a prevailing value system is causing damage to the wellbeing of our young people and drives behaviour which is threatening the future of our planet. The drivers of consumerism are powerful and ever present – hard for us to resist as individuals.
Collectively we need to demonstrate that change is possible through smart challenges to apparently impenetrable systems, infuse the sector with fresh visions of a positive future which young people can aspire to, enable environmental educators to reinforce compassionate values and weaken self-interest and establish an accepted cultural narrative that consumerism is damaging to people and planet.
The young generation has grown up with adverts throughout their whole lives, but it's damaging to the planet and to people's mental health and self esteem.
Our Beyond Consumerism video features some of the young people we have spoken to around the country about the pressures of advertising. Here they explain in their own words the impact that advertising is having on them and their generation.
Global Action Plan's Post-consumerism projects
Dirt Is Good
The ways we have been living have led to major threats to our natural world and the younger generation will experience the most serious consequences of these actions. These rapid changes are taking a toll on young people’s mental well-being. Working with Unilever as thought leadership partner for Persil’s Dirt Is Good Project, we commissioned new research to explore young people’ s values and how they perceive the values of others.
Flickers of the Future
The way that we depict the future plays a critical part in how it unfolds, and research shows that the bleak dystopias that films are currently portraying create fear, denial and passivity. Flickers of the future is a competition calling on young content creators to tell a different story - one where humans and planet thrive together.
Transform Our World
is a collaborative online hub that supports teachers in bringing environmental and social action into the classroom through showcasing quality-rated resources, programmes and events available from partner organisations.
The hub features a range of themes from Sustainable Development Goals, to Values and Wellbeing, and Food and Consumption. Regular Continuing Professional Development (CPD) events for teachers happen regularly online for the Transform Our World community, and tools are also featured to help any teacher feel empowered and confident in teaching about climate change.
In 2020 Transform Our World hosted the virtual Youth Climate Summit, and is hosting the Transform Our World Youth Summit online in November 2021, during the COP26 Climate Conference.
Transform Our World also aims to work with young people through the UK Schools Sustainability Network and supports groups of students in 48 high need schools across England.
Stop Targeted Advertising to Kids
Children are bombarded with advertising online, much of it precision targeted and highly manipulative. Unlike on TV, there are no rules limiting the the number of adverts shown to kids online. It's time there were. And it's time to stop targeted advertising to children, full stop.
Goals for Good
Goals for Good is an exciting new course that draws from research into positive psychology and sustainability to help young people live happier, healthier, and more planet friendly lifestyles.The course helps participants to challenge traditional notions of success, explore the five ways to wellbeing, find meaning and purpose by considering the effect of their goals beyond themselves and increase determination and use their strength to help achieve their goals.
Brentford Together aims to tackle poor health, social isolation and harness community skills to boost low volunteering rates in Brentford. The project is providing local residents with free community-led health and wellbeing sessions. Workshops include sessions on cooking, sewing, bicycle maintenance, first aid, knitting and gardening.
Our highly consumerist society teaches us that owning more equates to individual success and at Global Action Plan, we just don't buy it. '#Idontbuyit' calls out the forces that drive hyper-consumption and exposes the marketing techniques that are harmful to young people and the planet. Consuming less and focusing on what makes us happy are critical in combating climate change and boosting wellbeing. #Idontbuyit supports young people and parents to challenge the pressure to consume, set your own vision for what a happier, more sustainable future might look like and help you to build a resilience to our toxic culture of looks, likes and shopping.
Water links to almost everything in the world and over 2 billion people live in countries experiencing high water stress, which is why it important to educate young people and encourage them and their local community (no matter where they are in the world) to save water and spread the water saving message. Water Explorer inspires and equips students aged 8-14 all over the world to take bold and powerful action to save our precious water through fun water saving Missions.
H2O Heroes gives students the skills and support to design their own behaviour-change campaign - to get fellow students and their communities saving water. We run workshops to get students thinking about the sustainability of our water supply, and encourage them to talk to peers, teachers and families about it.
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