Climate Week 2023 in Netherlands

For the third year, UWC Maastricht has joined the national celebration of Climate Awareness Week. From 30 October to 3 November the Eco-Team brought to our community’s attention the ongoing Climate Crisis by proposing daily challenges; hosting an exhibition of works by MYP students in the reception area of Secondary; organising a documentary film screening and discussion; hosting a Youth & Climate Action Panel and collecting carbon footprint surveys from all Secondary students (to continue with staff and Primary students later in the year).

The Eco-Team would like to thank all those community members who took part in Climate Week by completing a challenge, attending an event, having a conversation about the Climate Crisis at home, at work or in the classroom and completing their school-related carbon footprint information.

The whole school community was invited to engage in 5 daily challenges that made us reflect on what we can do individually as Climate Action such as Meatless Monday, sustainable transport, second hand clothing and reducing our energy consumption at school and at home. It was exciting to see the widespread participation among students of all ages (Primary to Year 13), staff and families alike. 

The documentary film ‘Çhasing Coral’ and discussion proposed by the Environmental Action Group (EAG) brought the urgency of climate change in the oceans and the devastating effects that rising temperatures have on the acidification of our waters.

The Youth & Climate Action Panel brought together young community leaders from Maastricht and our own school who are engaged in Climate Action in their own countries and/or here in Maastricht and the Limburg province.

It was really inspiring to hear Year 13 student Lesein presenting his Trees4Goals project and the impacts of climate change in Kenya and Year 12 student Nadhuyan, from the Maldives, speaking about the climate emergency in the islands due the rising sea levels. Job Zomerplaag spoke about his PhD research and the role of citizenship and communities in Climate Action while presenting his “Green Wave” movement in Limburg. Paula Nipper, Vice-Chair of the Klimaat Actie Netwerk in Maastricht and Bo Braet, Hub and Community Manager for Maastricht University’s Green Office addressed the challenges of climate action and youth mobilization, especially in the context of Maastricht.

Now we look forward to celebrating a whole school Sustainability Week in April, around Earth Day, and hosting a day conference on ‘Sustainability in practice’ with other international schools in Netherlands at the end of May.