Representations of climate action in the mainstream media have often been white-washed, green-washed and diluted to be made compatible with capitalism. In response, Mya-Rose Craig’s award-nominated book We Have a Dream amplifies the voices of thirty young global environmentalists of colour. Having witnessed the impact of climate breakdown in Bangladesh, where her mum’s family come from, Mya-Rose was inspired to speak at her first climate rally in 2015. She has since connected Visible Minority Ethnic teens with nature, through her charity Black2Nature. Mya-Rose is an Ambassador for Survival International and has shared a stage with Greta Thunberg. Her previous book Birdgirl, nominated for the Jhalak Prize in 2023, dealt with the need to engage young VME people with climate issues and how, growing up with a mother with Bipolar Disorder, they used birds to help cope as a family.
Climate-related mental health issues are crippling millions. In Spinning Out, Charlie Hertzog Young points to a better way forward – towards wedding the needs of the Earth with the needs of the human mind, towards newfound meaning, connection and belonging. Spinning Out is a manual for anyone who wants to fight for a better world and avoid the pitfalls of despair. It draws on the experience of dozens of activists, organisers and researchers across every habitable continent – from radical psychiatrists and youth organisers to co-operative builders in flooded Pakistan, activists in Nigeria and earth defenders in indigenous Mexico – to outline models for recovery and post-traumatic growth. It shows how meaningful action can be a powerful means of both psychological recovery and planetary renewal.
These influential climate activists talk to Areeba Hamid, co-executive director of Greenpeace.