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Te Ara Whatu fundraising to attend COP23

Te Ara Whatu fundraising to attend COP23 – FOR IMMEDIATE USE

This year, the 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP23) will take place from 6 to 17 November in Bonn, Germany. The conference will be convened under the Presidency of Fiji.

Te Ara Whatu is a rōpū of Maori and Pasifika based in Aotearoa. We are sending the first indigenous youth delegation from Aotearoa to attend the 2017 UN Climate Talks in Bonn, Germany.

The indigenous peoples of the Pacific have a long history of colonisation under the European powers. From the ongoing militarisation of Pacific nations to the pollution and abuse of land, water and air, the colonial violence imposed on our homelands and people are still being realised. Today, native peoples the world over bear the brunt of climate change. We are paying the price for carbon colonialism, condoned and perpetuated by world leaders who prioritise profit over life.

This year, Fiji stands as the host nation of COP23. This will be a unique opportunity for young Pacific indigenous activists to make strong networks with others from around the world.

We are holding a number of fundraising events in the lead up to our departure, starting with a film screening of #ThisHomeIsOccupied at Unitec Institute of Technology, Mt Albert on Friday 20th October.

Te Ara Whatu member Noah Te Rama Thomas Pene says, “I see it as a duty that young people must accept. I see climate change as an opportunity to utilize indigenous practices and reclaim cultural approaches towards living within a sustainable environment. It means standing up to big money and fighting capitalism where it exploits land for resources. I just want the future generations to have what my grandparents had: clean water; fresh air; healthy, natural food; and to understand the spiritual connection with mother earth.”
You can find and follow Te Ara Whatu on Facebook.

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