What is COP26?
From the 1st – 12th November 2021, Glasgow will host the annual United Nations Climate Change Conference. It’s officially known as the 26th Conference of Parties, or COP26. The 196 nations are committed to meeting every years to make key decisions on climate change. The decisions made at COP26 will shape how governments respond (or not) to the climate crisis.
The official COP is split into a Blue Zone, for official badge-holders only, and a Green Zone, which is open to the public to visit. The Green Zone is in Glasgow Science Centre, and is where the public and school groups will be able to interact with various organisations, from businesses and universities, to NGOs and international organisations. Within the Blue Zone at the Glasgow SEC there are UN officials, representatives from governments, negotiators, advisors, a lot of press and media, and organisations with 'Observer' status.
As well as international leaders, Glasgow will be hosting indigenous leaders and climate activists from all over the world, many of them hosted by local hosts through the Homestay Network.
You can find out more by watching the fantastic Boiling Point YouTube series from the COP26 Coalition.
How can I get involved?
- Look at our News Page for CWIN's upcoming events including activism, protest and film screenings!
- Sign up to the COP26 Coalition Mailing List.
- Attend an event during Climate Fringe Week (18-26 September).
- Volunteer to support civil society in the run-up to COP. The COP26 Coalition and Stop Climate Chaos Scotland are looking for people to volunteer. Visit their website here.
- Look out for events as part of The Peoples’ Summit and the Global Day of Action for Climate Justice on November 6th, both run by COP26 Coalition to support mass mobilisation by communities around the world.
- Listen to the Climate Fringe podcast.
- Follow these social media channels @sccscot #COP26 #TimeForAction @Climate_Scot
More about my role
My name is Jennifer MacGillivray and I'm the Community Activator for the Food and Climate Action project and will be hosted by CWIN for two years.
Over the next two years the Food & Climate Action project will be working across the city to grow community-led activity to face the challenges that climate change will bring for us all and our food system. When developing the project, it was felt that it was very important to include the voices of marginalised people including those in or with experience of the asylum system.
There are four main areas of my work:
This is where you are most likely to see me out and about - at workshops, events and in schools - helping people in their aspirations to grow and cook food, preserve food, forage, access land, prevent food waste and learn about the injustices of the current food system.
CWIN already does a lot of great work in this area - bringing people together through cooking and sharing food, learning about the food from other cultures, and ensuring no one is excluded from access to good food.
COP26 events and campaigning
I will be helping to organise a series of events which are more about politics and activism during the UN Summit on Climate Change which is coming to Glasgow this November. This could be raising awareness of the issues driving climate change, what makes our food system so polluting, or how agriculture will have to adapt to the changing climate. In this the voices from the Global South and also those from marginalised groups in the UK will be recognised and heard.
I will be setting up a Food Forum in the local community, which will bring together teachers, cooks, gardeners, community cafes, pensioners, asylum seekers (everyone), to empower and facilitate community decision making. Ideas for new initiatives and projects will be developed collaboratively, and will be funded through a Peer Budgeting model. This is where local projects are assessed for funding by other local projects.
Food and Climate cafes
The fourth area of my work will be running a series of Food and Climate cafes - to form an in-depth shared vision of Glasgow, created by the people who live here, that will steer the direction of our project. The themes of the cafes will be 1. Seeds of Change 2. Alternative Glasgow 3. Thing from the Future 4. City Horizons 5. Planning Trees 6. Action Plans. I'm very excited to hear everyone's ideas and develop a positive, hopeful vision together.
Hope this has made things a little bit clearer on what I will be doing in my role. Any questions just get in touch as usual on JennyMac_gcfn@outlook.com.
Introducing the Food and Climate Action project
The Food and Climate Action project is an ambitious project linking together Glasgow Community Food Network, Urban Roots, St Paul's Youth Forum, The Space, Glasgow Eco Trust and Central and West Integration Network to transform Glasgow’s food system and reduce its impact on the climate crisis.
Building on the aims of the new Glasgow City Food Plan, the project will improve food education, establish a local green assembly, increase the amount of land being used for urban agriculture and mobilise young people to become climate leaders.
Community groups will also be able to pitch for micro-funding to get good food projects underway and new jobs will be created encouraging Community Activators to inspire change in their communities.
Jenny MacGillivray is the Community Activator to be hosted by Central and West Integration Network.
Food is so important in binding us together in community, it's also a key marker of our culture and a reminder of home.
Some of the future plans for Jenny at CWIN include a community growing project - to connect people in the asylum system with land for food growing, as well as cookery workshops, training in food growing skills and education on climate change. Part of this will be organising events for the Climate Fringe Week and community events during COP26 November 2021. If you have any ideas or would like to be involved please email her at JennyMac_gcfn@outlook.com