How does a concerned community member effectively lead local climate projects? The Climate Change Leadership Academy (2CLA) encourages helps folks do just that. Co-run by Vital Communities and the Upper Valley Adaptation Workgroup, 2CLA offers in-person and virtual meetings, guest speakers, group discussion, a project development workbook, and collaborative work time. The group explores climate change science, mitigation, adaptation, and migration – all with an eye towards equity and lived experience. Cohort members also have the change to develop their project design and leadership skills in order to lead successful community action. The current class includes 22 Upper Valley residents ranging in age from early-twenties to mid-seventies. This post reviews Session 4: Climate Migration – see the series here.
2CLA Program Manager Alana Redden writes:
We had Session 4 of 2CLA on November 1. The climate topic was climate migration. Unfortunately, due to logistics and scheduling, I wasn’t able to pre-record conversations with folks working on climate migration topics. However, lucky for us, Erich Osterberg, Dartmouth climate scientist and chair of the Upper Valley Adaptation Workgroup, is getting involved in this realm and was able to share about this with the 2CLA participants. They seemed to be very interested in hearing about his personal and professional journey in this work, as well as learning some of the details of the project itself. We had an “in-person” opportunity to hear from Erich, and then folks broke out into small groups to talk about what they learned from him as well as from the other pre-meeting materials we provided.
After covering climate migration, we moved into the project portion of the meeting. Participants were asked to review and complete (as much as they could) the component “Gather Feedback and Iterate Your Idea.” We believe it is vital that community projects be responsive to external feedback and adaptable to changing environments. Designing a project to be iterative is one of the best ways to plan for a sustainable and effective project.
We also asked participants to let us know what they need from the planning team (Erich, Dartmouth student Alana Macken, and myself) by mid-December. Many of the responses were actually about setting the participants up for success after mid-December. It seems that knowing they will continue to have support from us and from one another after December is an important part of them feeling prepared to wrap up the last of our sessions together. We have some exciting ideas, like a 2CLA buddy system, self-selected group work, continuing office hours, and potlucks. We will also decide on a time for our spring graduation and celebration.