3 April 2020

On Tuesday 24th March we hosted our event ‘Collaboration for COP26’ with IDEAS in Scotland. This was one of our first Bridge 47 events to be taken online due to the effects of the current COVID-19 crisis.

We had planned for this event to be an opportunity for people to form new connections, and to start working together on collaborative ideas. Yet re-working it for an online space did not mean we had to change these objectives. Although we were unable to get our group of participants together in person, meeting online still provided us with the space we needed to begin building partnerships and talk about how best to take ideas forward.

Our discussions centred around how we can mobilise within the education sector for the UN Climate Change Conference of Parties (COP26), which is due to take place in Glasgow at the end of this year. We gathered a group of people who work across Scotland within a breadth of roles in education and sustainability, making for conversations that covered a wide-range of perspectives. It was fantastic to be able to provide the virtual space for bringing together such an engaged group of individuals, many of whom were completely new to Bridge 47 and to each other.

Using Zoom’s breakout rooms, we split off into 4 groups to discuss some of the key ideas that came from our February training workshop on critical GCE with Karen Pashby (watch the event video here!). Each group focused on an idea for a key activity that would further young people’s engagement with the climate crisis through education. The groups came back with some really collaborative thinking and we are hopeful that this meeting will be the start of some of these creative ideas coming to fruition.

Despite the great uncertainty we are living through right now, seeing so many faces online, both familiar and new, made for a supportive and inspiring afternoon. In these uncertain times, it can feel like the opportunities we had for partnerships and events have been lost. We can however still bring people together to collaborate, adapt, and re-think how we approach our work during this time. Instead of lost opportunities we can view them as new challenges to tackle and chances to be creative in fresh ways.

Thanks to everyone who took part – even some cats made it into the group photo!

Online Zoom Meeting Group Photo