Patrick is a medical laboratory technician by profession, living in Ngai sub-county Oyam district, northern Uganda which was greatly affected by civil war of the Lord's Resistance Army for the period of 30 years leaving people crippling with development, post conflict recovery, and environmental preservation methods, where many war victims (children, teenage girls, boys, women, widows, orphans and the elderly) were killed. Some left their homes and were forced to stay in a gazetted place known as internally displaced camps for many years while leaving their homes bare without any economic activities like sustainable farming.

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This resulted into high level of HIV and other related disease and high crimes, poverty, illiteracy, teenage pregnancy, child labour and unemployment rates. There was a decline in agricultural productivity, even after the war, Poverty and lack of climate change awareness meant that many people were involved in burning big plantations of natural trees into charcoal for sell in exchange of money to buy food on the table for the family and meet medical costs.

This greatly affected the environment and climate pattern of northern Uganda as a whole and people started experiencing prolonged drought. A case in point is this year 2020-2021 where many small scale farmers have got little or nothing from farming due to scarce rainfall pattern, sometimes floods. Upon seeing and realizing all these events unfolding in front of me, I realized I need to stand up and speak out to say no to deforestation, conduct youth-led focused climate change awareness and sensitization, embrace the needs to plant more trees to save the endangered species in our environment and this inspired me to be a youth led activist to advocate for smart green world economy.

In your view, what do our leaders here in Wales, the UK and around the world need to do to solve climate change?

More awareness and sensitization must be given to the right target group which makes the largest number of people in the world and these are the youths. This must be a practical based approach with little theory. Every single youth must know that I need to plant at least 100 trees before reaching 30 years of age.

Why have you become a Climate Cymru ambassador?

To bring to an end climate illiteracy, end deforestation, embrace use of renewable energy source, for example, solar, among youths and bring all youths globally to embrace the needs to plant thousands of trees to save lives and environment.

What makes you optimistic for the future with regards to climate change?

Based upon what’s going on now, if we don’t end this now, we will lose the most beautiful species we have in the world, including humans but if we all embrace to put to an end now then we shall have a beautiful world with significant species and the green world economy.

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Elizabeth Mutch


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