Climate Change

Climate Warriors: After Greta, now meet Hilda

Hilda Flavia Nakabuye is a 22-year-old Ugandan college student, who recently delivered a powerful speech in Copenhagen on the climate crisis

By DTE Staff
Published: Monday 14 October 2019

The world is already mesmerised by the power and charisma of 16-year-old climate activist, Greta Thunberg. Now though, a new 'climate warrior' might be appearing on the horizon.

Hilda Flavia Nakabuye is a 22-year-old Ugandan college student, who recently delivered a powerful speech in Copenhagen on the climate crisis. She was in the Danish capital to attend the  the C40 Mayors summit. The mayors of more than 90 of the world's biggest cities met in Copenhagen last week to push for more action on climate change.

Hilda has been protesting in Kampala since 2017 when she realised that climate change was behind her grandmother's inbility to grow food. In February 2019, she founded #FridaysForFuture Uganda.

Below is the transcript of Hilda's speech on October 11 at the Copenhagen summit, which drew attention from many quarters:


I am Hilda, the Founder of Fridays For Future Uganda.

I am missing my classes right now, the same way I have missed them for the last six weeks to create climate awareness. It’s not the first time climate change has kept me out of school. I once had to miss three months of school as my father wasn’t able to raise my tuition fees, because of climate change.

I am a victim of this climate crisis and I am not ashamed to say so.

After the massive effects of climate change in my home village — the heavy strong rains that washed away our crops and left the land bare, the constant dry spells that left the streams and wells dry — my parents had to sell off our land and livestock to sustain our lives. And when the money was over, it was a question of survival or death.

I am lucky that I am still surviving. I will not take this for granted because people are dying every day.

I made a decision to protect the only place I call home: Earth. And so I joined other young people all over the globe to protect our future. Through endless fights and sleepless nights, we hustle our way. Because this our future.

I can tell you that we are a generation of scared people, but very ambitious ones. United, persistent, and very good at action.

You too can make a decision now. If you are willing to join the youth in this fight, I want you to make a promise by standing up right now.

Thank you.

And for those of you that didn’t stand up, your beds might be comfortable now but not for long. You will soon feel the same heat we feel every day.

And I also promise you: Rest assured that youth from the other side of the world are fighting for a safe future for you and for us all and are not about to give up.

Let’s move away from this summit with action. Thank you. 

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