This past week over 20 high schoolers from across the state converged for the 10th Annual Alaska Youth for Environmental Action (AYEA) Civics & Conservation Summit.
Amidst rising fuel and energy costs, these student leaders came together to learn about the legislative process, and to speak up for a brighter, more sustainable future in Alaska that addresses solutions to problems such as energy insecurity, transportation, and jobs.
Ages 15-18, these youth represented a diverse set of communities including Elim, Nelson Lagoon, Stebbins, Koliganek, Healy, Anchorage, Fairbanks, Homer, Kenai, Juneau, Napakiak and Palmer.
“Young people are inheriting this world, and we deserve to have a say in what is happening to it,” said 16-year-old Aviva Hirsch of Anchorage. “We have good ideas about how to solve problems in our state and community, and deserve to be listened to.”
As participant Cassidy Owen of Denali Park puts it, “We (the youth of Alaska) know what needs to happen and we know how to make it happen.”