Joining Quakers on the People’s March for Climate, Justice & Jobs

I try to make decisions in my life that respect and support the environment. But no matter what I do or how much I challenge myself, I can't change things on a scale big enough to solve the problem of climate change. I can't change everything by changing myself.

Marches are an opportunity to stand up and say 'I want change'. They're an opportunity to be visible. When thousands of people march, it sends a message that society cares.

Emily on the People's March for Climate, Justice & Jobs
Emily on the march. Credit: Ellie Roberts

What marching means to me

Marching is about building community. Walking with 50,000 others in London, and alongside hundreds of thousands around the world, gives me new energy.

It's also about solidarity. Climate change doesn't affect my life at the moment, but it's already affecting communities around the world. It was good to see so many banners on the day sharing messages of solidarity with these communities. To be part of saying 'this isn't good enough', we want something better. I valued having a day dedicated to thinking about, and focusing on, climate justice.

I walked with Quakers because they're the community I feel closest to and most inspired by. The Quaker bloc always feels like a comfortable and safe space, I know I'll be welcomed and that people will be friendly. There's a feeling that we're putting our faith into action together by stomping around the streets of London!

On the day

It was good to re-join with Friends and friends. I felt particularly energised when we passed the start line for the march and the organisers told us that we were part of 50,000, making it the biggest ever climate march in the UK.

But being there in winter also felt more serious. We were against the elements, clinging to our placards and banners. It showed that we were there because we care.

Reflecting afterwards

Since Sunday, I've been thinking about what marches can accomplish. I go on lots of marches and sometimes it seems that our voices aren't being heard. But it feels really important that we have, and use, the ability to march.

You can't do everything for all causes, but you can join a march on a big day and remind yourself that you're one of many, many people who care. Taking action is sometimes about doing what you can, when you can.

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