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Shalvi captivates crowd

Lice Movono
Saturday, November 11, 2017

NASAROWAQA student Shalvi Shakshi captured the minds and hearts of the crowd at a Youth Action event at COP23 in Bonn, Germany, when she gave an animated speech calling for climate action.

The young Bua student won the opportunity to attend COP23 after she came second in a nationwide oratory competition.

With the reminder that "every single person on this Earth has the power to change the world", Shalvi led the event, which included winners of youth climate action from around the Asia/Pacific region.

The Year 5 student was the youngest and seemed to be the most nervous, until she took to the stage in front of COP23 president Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum and UNICEF officials from the region.

"We should be more considerate on our action which contributes towards climate change," Shalvi passionately said to the 50 people present at the side event which took place in the Bonn Zone.

"Just imagine when we grow up and notice that the tide, which before used to reach about 100 metres from your home, is now only 50 metres away."

"This is the time dear colleagues, this is the time to act and do something."

Speaking at the event, Fiji's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, Nazhat Shameem, said there was a great need for emphasis on the impacts of climate change on children.

"Let us also not forget that you, the children, are some of the loudest advocates of climate action. To safeguard a future Earth for children, I personally believe that todays agreements must not only yield results for children, but with children," Ms Shameem said.

Calling for work to make the Paris Agreement operational for children, the chief negotiator said the COP23 presidency placed a greater focus on education so that it translated into funded work programs.

"This is a challenge, but not when we tap into each other's energy to act," the chief negotiator said.

Also travelling with Shalvi is Timoci Naulusala of Naivicula District School, who won the nationwide competition last month.

Timoci will speak at the opening of the high level segment of COP23 next week.

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