Background

Climate change is a human rights issue. Any plan, solution or action to tackle climate change in Scotland must respond to the needs, and rights of everyone living here and this means listening to the diversity of views and lived experiences of Scotland’s citizens. This includes children who equally have the right to have opinions and for these opinions to be heard and taken seriously as outlined in Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).

As Scotland’s Climate Assembly members must be over the age of 16, the secretariat invited Children’s Parliament to support the participation and engagement of children under 16, to ensure their views, experiences and ideas are part of the discussions and calls to action going forward. To capture the diversity of children’s views and experiences, and to echo the process of the Assembly, Children’s Parliament is working with 100 children across Scotland from 10 schools. The children are a mixed gender, income and ethnicity group representing both urban and rural communities.

About Children's Parliament

Established in 1996, Children’s Parliament is Scotland’s centre of excellence for children’s human rights, participation and engagement. Through rights-based, creative practice, they provide younger children from diverse backgrounds across Scotland with opportunities to share their experiences, thoughts and feelings so that they can influence positive change in their lives at home, in school and in the community.

Their mission is to inspire greater awareness and understanding of the power of children’s human rights and to support implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) across Scotland.

The Investigation

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, this work is being facilitated digitally and remotely. The children’s investigation into climate change for the Climate Assembly has two key components: 


Interactive, Digital Survey 

The 100 Members of Children’s Parliament (MCPs) across Scotland are completing interactive, digital surveys in October, January and February which explore their views and ideas on what needs to happen in Scotland to tackle climate change. Each survey is complemented by a small group workshop delivered by a supporting adult from the children’s school using materials designed and provided by Children’s Parliament. There is a creative element to the survey, such as creating and uploading a piece or art or short audio/film clip. 

Findings from Survey 1
Here is an infographic highlighting some of the key findings from the first survey, completed by the 100 children across Scotland in October 2020.

Children’s Vision for the Future
As part of the first survey, children were invited to illustrate their vision for Scotland in the future if we work together to tackle, and adapt to, climate change. We will be posting a gallery of these ideas soon. 

 

The Investigation

In addition, Children’s Parliament is working with 12 children from 4 of the 10 participating schools to analyse the findings from their peers gathered in the surveys and to further explore the core climate change themes (discussed by the Citizen’s Assembly) through creative, participatory methods and activities.

The 12 MCP Investigators meet twice a month on an online video call facilitated by the Children’s Parliament team. Each month, the three children are also sent short, fun and creative activities to prepare in advance of the calls. Below in the 'documents' section you can see the investigators’ monthly ‘mission’ packs, and some of the activities they have been up to in their October, November, and December meetings. Feel free to download these and use them at home.


To communicate the children’s journey, findings and key messages to the Assembly members, Children’s Parliament is creating a series of short films to be shown at the Assemblies taking place between October 2020 and March 2021. 

The first of these was shown on the weekend of the 7th and 8th November 2020 and be watched below:

Further Information

If you have any questions or would like more information, you can contact Katie Reid, project lead on: katie@childrensparliament.org.uk.

You can also visit our website to find out more about Children’s Parliament current and past work: www.childrensparliament.org.uk.

Monthly Activity Packs - Download and use at home!

October Activity Box

November Activity Box

December Activity Box