Fridays For Future Sudbury marks 2nd anniversary with the hope it will be their last
'It's always important to stay motivated, especially with COVID-19'
It's been nearly two years since a Sudbury preteen skipped school to join the youth climate strike movement, protesting against government inaction on climate change.
Sophia Mathur, who is now 13 years old, was one of the first students in Canada to take part in Friday protests, inspired by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg. And today, the Sudbury chapter of Fridays for Future Sudbury, is marking the movement's two-year anniversary — with a Halloween-themed demonstration.
Mathur says she's trying to keep the momentum going, even during the pandemic.
"It's always important to stay motivated, especially with COVID-19. And it was really hard on our group because we were just starting to get a whole bunch of people to come out to our events, and then covid hit and we couldn't have big rallies anymore," she said.
"So we just need to continue, to push on and keep fighting for our future."
Mathur says there have been successes along the way — including when the City of Greater Sudbury declared a climate emergency.
"We still have the same message, which is 'listen to the experts and cooperate'. And we really hope that we won't have to celebrate year-three next year, because I really hope that by then adults and governments will have taken this crisis seriously."
She says Friday's demonstration is limited to about 20 people, to ensure physical distancing.
Mathur says she's disappointed by news this week that a federal court has dismissed a lawsuit led by youth climate activists against the Canadian government.
Halloween is scary. Climate change is much scarier. But it is solvable.<br>This is our spooky scary skeletons dance for our Halloween climate strike on Friday. Start practising everyone! <a href="https://t.co/Sv6i330QHW">pic.twitter.com/Sv6i330QHW</a>—@sophiamathur