Brighton pupils have their eyes on world leaders.

June 24, 2021


Brighton pupils are calling on Boris Johnson to tackle the climate crisis and ensure those worst affected are put at the heart of this year’s climate talks. In a stunt outside Brighton Old Pier on 22 June, pupils from Cardinal Newman Catholic School, Hove, held a banner reminding the government that “The ‘Eyes of the World’ are watching” ahead of the UK hosting world leaders the UN climate conference ‘COP26’ in Glasgow this November.

“We’re here today because we need our young voices heard on the problems of climate change by the government, who need to help people who have already been affected by climate change”, said one pupil explaining why they got involved with the campaign, run by charity CAFOD.

Another added: “We need to keep caring for our environment so that the future generations can enjoy the wonders of our world.”

The ‘Eyes of the World’ banner first made an appearance on the opening day of the G7 summit in Cornwall in June. Accompanied by a massive art installation, created by pupils from St Mary’s primary school in Falmouth, over 12,000 young people have now joined CAFOD’s campaign, urging world leaders to take action on issues like the climate crisis. Over the next six months, the banner will travel to 15 landmarks across the UK - including the Houses of Parliament, the Senedd (Welsh Parliament) and Blackpool Tower - reaching its final destination in Glasgow at ‘COP26’ in November.

Mr De Quay, a Religious Education teacher at Cardinal Newman, added:  

“We know that young people care a lot about climate change and this campaign is a great opportunity to get their messages across to the government. It’s nice to be taking part alongside other Catholic schools and young people up and down the UK.”

Charity CAFOD, who has coordinated the journey of the banner, hopes that over the coming months, thousands more young people will get involved in the 'Eyes of the World' campaign.

Sinead Callaghan, CAFOD’s young leadership coordinator, concluded:

“We would like to say a huge thank you to the pupils of Cardinal Newman and to every young person who has already taken part in the ‘Eyes of the World’ campaign - your actions will make a huge difference to those living with poverty and injustice.

“We know that young people really care about reaching out to people around the world. They are the ones demanding change and we need to give them a stage to raise their voices.

“In the run-up to COP26, I hope that the UK government does listen to the voices of young people and the Catholic community and takes seriously their duty to look out for global communities already impacted by the climate emergency.”