April 22, 2020

4 Teen Activists You Should Be Following on Social

Christina Sirabella

When many people hear the term “climate change,” they tend to think it’s something that will happen in the distant future. To Gen Z, however, climate change is happening now. In fact, 80 percent of Gen Zers feel they can have an impact on issues by using social media, and 64 percent believe supporting issues online is more effective at making a difference than doing something in their communities.

There are tons of young activists who have worked tirelessly to spread awareness of climate change—so we picked a few we think you should be following on social media. From skipping school for protests to speaking with world leaders about their cause, these teenagers have proven that the time to act is now.

Greta Thunberg, 17

You likely know of Greta Thunberg—who has now become the face of climate change for Gen Z and Time’s 2019 Person of the Year—from her famous “School Strike for Climate” sign. After winning an essay competition on climate change at 15, Greta decided to let her voice be heard in a different way. She began protesting outside of the Swedish Parliament every Friday, and started Fridays For Future to encourage others to do the same. A photo of her sitting in front of the Parliament holding her “School Strike for Climate” sign caused her to go viral within a matter of days.

Greta did not stop there. By interacting with her over 10 million followers on social media, she has inspired teens across the world to join the fight for climate change. In September, she led the charge for the Global Climate Strike which 4 million people participated in globally. Clearly, her impact has been huge—the hashtag #schoolstrike4climate on Instagram has been used over 102,000 times. This Friday, April 24, Fridays For Future is doing a 24-hour YouTube live stream. Tune in to hear from strikers and scientists from around the world, and keep up with Greta on social media through the links below!

Twitter: @GretaThunberg
Instagram: @gretathunberg

 

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Jamie Margolin, 18

After witnessing the destruction of Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria and being personally affected by the Canadian wildfires in Seattle, Jamie Margolin decided enough was enough. At just 15 years old, Jamie founded Zero Hour, a nonprofit youth organization dedicated to creating entry points, training, and resources for new young activists and organizers wanting to take concrete action around climate change.

Through her organization and social media, Jamie has helped to organize hundreds of marches across the country. In 2018, Jamie joined in youth protests across the globe, from London to Washington D.C., meeting with city officials to discuss ways to make a more sustainable future for her generation. Now 18 years old, she is continuing the fight against climate change by empowering young people like herself, and she’s on her way to publishing her first book, Youth to Power. This week, Zero Hour will be part of a three-day live stream called Earth Day Live along with tons of other activists, performers, thought leaders, and artists. Keep up with Jamie on social media through the links below!

Twitter: @Jamie_Margolin
Instagram: @jamie_s_margolin

 

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Xiye Bastida, 18

Xiye Bastida is no stranger to the effects of climate change. Born and raised in San Pedro, Tultepec, a town outside of Mexico City, Bastida endured droughts and flooding throughout her childhood. Five years ago, she and her family moved to New York City, where she learned about the devastations caused by Hurricane Sandy and how it impacted the area.

Realizing there was no escaping climate change, Xiye decided to start an environmental club at her school. She joined several organizations committed to climate change, one of which is a youth-led campaign called We The Planet. For the first climate strike in March 2019, she mobilized 600 students from her school and has taken a citywide leadership role in organizing climate strikes and speaking out in rallies and town halls. She sits on the administration committee of the People’s Climate Movement, and received the “Spirit of the UN” award in 2018. For Earth Day, We The Planet is encouraging everyone to participate in their Global Day of Action by posting a video on social media detailing one systemic and one individual action that they are going to commit to for the year. Keep up with Xiye on social media through the links below!

Twitter: @xiyebastida
Instagram: @xiyebeara

 

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Kevin J. Patel, 18

A first-generation Indian American, Kevin J. Patel has been affected by pollution in his home city of Los Angeles from a young age. He was diagnosed at the age of 14 with heart palpitations due to pollution. With his environment directly affecting his way of life, Kevin decided to take matters into his own hands.

Kevin founded an organization called One Up Action. Much like Zero Hour, One Up Action is aiming to help youth activists bring awareness to climate change while working in their communities. Kevin wants to arm young people with enough knowledge to truly make an impact for the fight against climate change. To celebrate Earth Day, One Up Action is doing a live stream and Q&A to discuss environmental and climate issues with activists, organizations, and influencers. Keep up with Kevin on social media through the links below!

Twitter: @imkevinjpatel
Instagram: @imkevinjpatel

 

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Here at Likeable, we support and admire these four teens’ bravery and dedication to fighting climate change—and we’re working to spread the word ourselves. We’re excited to be producing a few sustainability-related projects that are coming soon—so stay tuned!

Tags: Climate Change, Influencer Marketing, Instagram, Trends, Twitter, YouTube

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