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3500 young people and adults gathered in Courthouse Square in downtown Santa Rosa in solidarity with all those all across the US and the world to demand transformative action be taken to address the climate crisis.
3500 young people and adults gathered in Courthouse Square in downtown Santa Rosa in solidarity with all those all across the US and the world to demand transformative action be taken to address the climate crisis.

Climate Strike :
3500 Young People & Adult Gather
in Courthouse Square

Sep 30, 2019
by Elaine B. Holtz

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On September 20, three days before the UN Climate Summit in NYC, over an estimated 3500 young people and adults gathered in Courthouse Square in downtown Santa Rosa in solidarity with all those all across the US and the world to demand transformative action be taken to address the climate crisis. Millions took to the streets, demanding a right to a future.
The strike was led by a diverse coalition of youth and county wide climate organizations including Sunrise Sonoma County, 350 Sonoma, Fridays For Future Santa Rosa, Youth V. Apocalypse, Citizens Climate Lobby Santa Rosa, Sierra Club Sonoma County, Schools For Climate Action, Daily Acts, Transition Sonoma Valley, Climate Reality Project, Center For Climate Protection Sonoma County Land Trust Wroth Lewis Institute, Sebastopol Carbon Conversations, Sustainable SR JC, North Bay Organizing Project, Sonoma County Conservation Action, Sonoma County Peace And Justice Center, EC02 School. 

The strike was coined as an inter generational day of striking with the goal of launching climate action across the world and was Inspired by 16 year old. Greta Thunberg a Swedish teenager who is credited with raising global awareness of the risks posed by global warming and climate change, and with holding politicians to account for their lack of action on what Thunberg calls the “climate crisis”. Her message sounds to me that she is saying that the adults, the leadership is not doing enough to reverse it or prepare people because it is happening and robbing the youth of the world of our future. Our youth are our future and we must stand up with them and speak out with them. For additional information go tohttps://globalclimatestrike.net/#faq

A second strike took place on September 27 in solidarity with Earth Strike, a grass roots movement demanding immediate climate action from governments and corporations worldwide. For more information on earth ,strikes go to. https://www.earth-strike.com/

Commentary:  Being among all those young people and feeling the enthusiasm along with concern and expressed fear for their future was both motivating and inspiring for me.  It brought back memories of how I felt when the adults in the room did not listen to our concerns during those years of protest around the Vietnam War.  It is important to listen to our youth, it is their future and we must honor that and support them in every way we can.  Change is hard but being at the strike I saw a change is upon us right now.  Two of my favorite signs at the rally read, “My child is watching, that is why I am marching.”  The second one says it all for me, “The worst you can Do is Do Nothing.    

Covering Climate Now-a global journalism initiative
From September 15-23 more than 300 outlets worldwide and dozens of institutional and independent partners, with a combined audience of more than 1 billion people agreed to bring more and better coverage to the defining story of our time, Climate Change.  The goal of this initiative was to maximize coverage of the climate crisis and its impacts in the lead up to the United Nations Climate Summit on September 23. You can follow the coverage on social media, with the hashtag #coveringclimatenow and for additional information go to www.coveringclimatenow.org/

In hearing about this initiative, although I was not signed on, I still followed their suggestions. Go to www.womensspaces.com for the month of September I have guests who are both taking about climate change and involved in one of the many organizations speaking out for change.  The interviews were inspiring and hopeful and took place in Santa Rosa on KBBF 89.1FM.

Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Exhibit
This year’s Museum of Sonoma County’s annual Día de los Muertos exhibition will feature artwork and altars created by local artists and collectors.  Included in the exhibit will be special works created by our Youth+Art students and will highlight the submissions from the Memory Portrait Competition.  The Memory Portrait Competition is an art contest for 5th-12th-grade students. The winners of the competition were announced at the Día de los Muertos Opening Reception and Family Day and I will have the names of the winners in next month’s column.

Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a joyous remembrance of the lives of family membersand loved ones who have passed and a celebration of the cycle of life. The holiday is celebrated on November 1st and 2nd throughout Latin America but is more closely associated with Mexico, where it originated.  

Artists featured in this year’s exhibition include: Nuala Creed, Catrina Divina, Tracy Ferron, Peter Perez, Rob-O, Rubén Guzmán, and Martín Zúñiga, with curated objects from the collections of Liz Camino Byers and the Children’s Museum of Sonoma County.  For more information go to:  museumsc.org/exhibitions/

The exhibit is from September 28 through November 10.  The museum is located at 425 Seventh St., Santa Rosa.
Special Acknowledgement and Thank You: Cynthia Leung, Director of Public Programs and Tours has worked with the museum for over a decade has retired.   Whenever there was an exhibit I wanted to cover Cynthia would give me a VIP tour and provide an in-depth explanation about the exhibit.  Her knowledge and passion was inspiring.  Wishing Cynthia the best life has to offer, she made a difference for the museum and community.

Santa Rosa Junior College (SRJC) recognized as a leader in college sustainability
SRJC received three awards for its progressive sustainability efforts at the annual California Higher Education Sustainability Conference (CHESC) in July 2019. These awards recognize the college’s efforts to reduce energy demands, leverage renewable energy and improve efficiency of its on-site water usage. 

An award for water efficiency and quality, recognizing SRJC’s “Living Learning Landscape” was received. This project included the creation of sustainable garden templates that meet Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance (MWELO) standard.  The templates are free to download at www.livinglearninglandscapes.com

One of the most distinguished and only individual awards at the conference was given to David Liebman, Manager, Sustainability and Energy Programs as a Sustainability Champion in the California Community College category.

SRJC was also acknowledged as the first California Community College to achieve the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) recognition for its efforts and completion of this internationally recognized framework.

SRJC received a bronze designation for its submission which can be viewed here. To learn more about Sustainability at Santa Rosa Junior College visit:https://sustainability.santarosa.edu

Student Poll workers needed for March 3 and November 3, 2020 elections. In 1996 the  California State Legislature amended election law to allow high school students to serve as poll workers on Election Day.  This is a wonderful opportunity for the students to get first-hand experience with the election process and to see democracy in action.  For the 2020 elections students in Santa Rosa and every city in Sonoma County has an opportunity to be a poll worker during election time.

To participate in this program the student has to be a United States citizen or lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the US, be at least 16 years old, attend a public or private high school, have at least a 2.5 grade point, have written permission from their parents and school and attend a poll worker training class.  Students will receive a total stipend for participation of $100.  ·        

Student application forms, for the March 3 Presidential Primary, are due no later than Monday, December 16, 2019.  For additional information Students can call the Sonoma County Poll Worker Program at 565-6816 or email ROV-POLLS@sonoma-county.org orvisit the link to the online.

Something to think about: 

“It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that’s important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there’ll be any fruit. But that doesn’t mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.” 

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was an Indian lawyer, anti-colonial nationalist and political ethicist, who employed nonviolent resistance to lead the successful campaign for India’s independence from British Rule, and in turn inspire movements for civil rights and freedom across the world.


Santa Rosa Snippets by Elaine B. Holtz

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