Hello friend! You might not hear from me a lot via email — that’s because I tend to stay behind-the-scenes making sure everything is running smoothly for our climate campaigns in South Africa.
My name’s Tshepo and I live in Johannesburg. My job is to support and lift up the work of our campaigners and local groups, and I’m reaching out to you today as part of our climate spotlight series to talk about the work 350.org is doing in South Africa. Here it goes:
In the last few years, South Africa has experienced a mad rush for fossil fuel projects because oil companies are trying to convince our people that gas is a necessary “bridge” to renewable energy. So every day, I support around 30 local groups around the country, providing them training and strategic advice on how to change this false narrative. I hear from them about their experiences, how they utilized the resources we provided and what their plans are for the next action or campaign. It is one of my biggest joys!
350 South Africa is also part of groundbreaking coalitions that are really changing the path of energy and climate policies around here. In 2022, we have widened the participation of community-based organizations in the Climate Justice Coalition, which is fighting for clean, safe, and affordable energy for all.
A lot of my job is to help open these doors to new coalitions, and to help the power of people emerge and flourish in their leadership. Last year, we developed a Community Campaigning Handbook with case studies from our own network, so we can learn from and with each other and build inspiration.
In 2023, our plan is to support these local groups to develop continuous and longer term campaigns, to welcome new members and youth, and to build sustainable communications strategies for amplifying their projects and wins! We also want to support the groups we already work with to be more independent — financially and strategically — so we can keep growing our network and adding more voices to our climate action stage.
Next year will be decisive for climate action in South Africa, and we need your help to keep the momentum growing.
Thank you for taking the time to learn about our work here in South Africa. I hope to talk to you more soon.
South Africa Organiser
Do you have two more minutes? Please send Tshepo a quick note of solidarity and thanks. We’ll be sending every message directly to him and his family ahead of the holidays.