Sarah Croft is CAFOD’s campaigns officer. She joined thousands of others in London on Saturday to campaign for action on climate change.
I love the first really sunny day of the year. The kind of day when you can go out without a coat for the first time, feeling the heat on your skin and seeing spring flowers starting to poke their heads through the grass.
On Saturday I was delighted to see that this day had finally arrived! I admit, the first thing that popped into my mind wasn’t ‘This is the ideal day for a protest’. Instead, pictures of BBQs, picnics in the park, bike rides, and ice creams started to flash before my eyes.
Toddlers, teenagers, students and grandparents…
Nevertheless, as I walked into Lincoln Inn Fields in central London to join the thousands of other people gathering ahead of the march, I was stuck by an upbeat festival atmosphere. There were groups of people everywhere I looked, with their homemade placards and costumes.
Noise bubbled up from around the field, groups chatting, filming, shouting and signing. There were toddlers, teenagers, students, grandparents.
Each group of people had their own story to tell about why they were compelled to tackle climate change.
As I unrolled my banner I had brought along, two Sisters came up to me. They had been looking out for the CAFOD logo and asked if they could march alongside me. I felt immediately welcomed into a community of people who had one thing in common: that it was time for action.
Doubling the love for Lent
As part of Lent this year I have been doubling ‘the love’ for things that I care about that are affected by climate change.
For the love of my global neighbour I have emailed my parliamentary candidates, asked my friends to sign One Climate One World action cards and have been making changes to my lifestyle to better care for creation.
I have been reflecting on the fact that climate change is not just going to disappear through just one action at one point in time. What we need is a sustained movement. Change comes through a multitude of actions and through continued pressure on world leaders, with everyone – wherever they are from – playing their part.
I can’t wait till next time: 17 June 2015
What I loved about Saturday and what I love about attending marches, is that as well as speaking to political leaders, you end up speaking to the people alongside you. I left with a huge sense of energy that the climate movement is growing and that there are thousands of people who are acting alongside me.
The march was just one way of taking action on one day. But I’m sure that all of us who were there will continue to campaign for change.
I can’t wait for the next time. I’ll be there when thousands of people gather together on 17 June to meet their MPs as part of the CAFOD-supported Speak Up For The Love Of lobby of parliament. It’s a crucial time – there’ll be a new parliament with many new MPs and we’ll be calling on the government – whoever’s in power – to take action globally and in the UK, and to take action now.
Fingers crossed for another sunny day!