UM students among young leaders attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference.
A group of young Jewish leaders from across the country, including one from Michigan, will attend the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Egypt from November 6-18.
The 10 young leaders have been with Hazon’s Jewish Youth Climate Movement (JYCM) since high school and are now attending college.
Before attending the conference, they will spend time in Israel, meet with Israeli colleagues involved in environmental management and activism, and then travel to Egypt together.
Detroit native, University of Michigan student and JYCM College Fellow Naomi Parr is one of the young leaders in attendance.
Parr studied archeology and Minor dramatization, seeing these subjects as her greater passions—parallel paths to telling stories in all its forms. She believes her storytelling is particularly applicable to the politics of climate justice. This, combined with her passion for sustainable food systems, motivates her commitment to the environment.
“When we’re in Israel, we’re going to do a tour from an ecological point of view, as opposed to the typical religious or tourist highlight kind of tours,” Parr said. We take a look at the environmental activism between Israeli-Palestinian groups and many beyond their borders.”
Young leaders visit the Dead Sea and participate in discussions on environmental issues taking place there. They will visit the Araba Institute, an Israeli environmental organization, and possibly go camping in the Negev. Then we head to Egypt for COP27.
“There are various interfaith organizations that we meet, educational trainings that we participate in, and so many speakers that I look forward to hearing so much,” Parr said. A group of overwhelmingly educated and qualified people, with so many people in the same place to think and talk and have the opportunity to make the kind of change we desperately need. I’m excited about it. I’m excited to learn.”
Par joined JYCM’s founding committee as a sophomore in high school. She also served as Creative Her Arts and Writing Director for JYCM.
“I am very passionate about the human perspective of who is affected and how it can be mitigated and brought about more equity,” said Parr. increase. “I am also passionate about sharing people’s stories. I think stories are a way to unlock human empathy that makes people understand that it’s time to take action.”
JYCM Director Liana Rothman said, “We are so excited to have Naomi represent Michigan and Michigan Jews as part of this trip. We really hope that the trip will foster connections and relationships between JYCM leaders and other Jewish climate leaders in the country and around the world.”