Climate Voices is our core programme to inspire and enable secondary school students across the UK to think critically about climate change, to have a say in their own sustainable futures, and to lead climate action in schools.

Inspiring climate action

Since 2015, Climate Voices has enabled more young people across the UK, particularly from schools with higher levels of disadvantage, to have a clear route to engagement in climate action and a recognised voice in their own sustainable futures.

Core to the programme are:

  • Climate conferences using UN-style negotiations to deepen understanding of global experiences of climate change, climate justice and of the challenges of change on this scale.
  • Local action workshops, summits and national events to encourage and inspire school-based initiatives led by young people, as well as to provide opportunities for their voices to be heard.

We’ve expanded the reach of the programme since 2018 to enable secondary schools in Reading, Bristol, Gloucestershire, Solihull, West London and Liverpool to participate in our flagship climate conferences as hubs for local action. In 2021, we rolled out a ‘COP26 in the Classroom’ resource and the Climate Action Survey to enable young people across the UK to make their voices heard in the run-up to the COP26 climate conference due to be hosted in Glasglow in November 2021.

Climate Voices has been made possible since its inception through the support of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, in addition to the support of other national and local funders.

Impact

Our core Climate Voices programme has inspired young people from all over the UK to become advocates and leaders on climate change. Since 2018:

Engagement

Over 5,000 young people from over 100 secondary schools in the UK have taken part in climate conferences and action workshops. 90% of students we surveyed after events felt their views were listened to.

Advocacy and action

83% of young people we surveyed after our events said that as a result of taking part, they now want to influence friends and family. Through our programme, over 900 young people have developed their ideas for climate action and met with experts and decision-makers.

Leadership

Over 100 students have shown leadership after participating in our programme, from participating in local government climate strategy to running for public office.

Inclusion

Over 40% of the students participating in our initiatives came from schools with pupil premium levels above the national average.

Watch an example of one of our climate conferences from 2019 in Hounslow:

Local Impact

Explore the impact of our flagship climate conferences in each of the main areas we work in.

Supporters

The phase of the project since 2018, Climate Voices II (CVII), follows on from the initial Climate Voices project (2015-2018). CVII is a three-year project (2018-2021) supported by a grant from the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (JRCT). Additional funding and support-in-kind was also provided for specific events from local partners.