• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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NGO, Catholic parish pilots faith for climate action initiative

NGO, Catholic parish pilots faith for climate action initiative

Climate Action Africa and Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Catholic Church, Clegg, have piloted the Faith for Climate Action (F4CA)) initiative to instill environmental stewardship in the hearts of young Nigerians.

The inaugural project, themed ‘Integrating Religion and AI for Climate Action’ was flagged off recently at the church premises and is set to unfold over the next 12 weeks.

According to a statement, the initiative aims to introduce children aged seven to 12 to the dynamic realm of artificial intelligence (AI) and its profound capacity to communicate compelling narratives that ignite a passion for environmental responsibility.

“Our vision for the Faith for Climate Action program is to empower the next generation with the knowledge and passion to address the urgent environmental challenges we face,” said Alice Eze, chief operating officer of Climate Action Africa.

“Climate Action Africa aims to achieve this by fusing technology with faith-based teachings to cultivate a deep sense of responsibility in these young minds,” she said.

She noted that the unique curriculum melds faith-based teachings with innovative technological advancements, offering a comprehensive approach to climate action education.

The project, hosted at Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Catholic Church in Lagos, was a resounding success. Over ninety (90) children were immersed in an educational journey that began with the concept of climate change in an accessible and relatable manner.

The session’s scholarly approach fostered an understanding of climate change’s causes, effects, and relevance to their lives and communities, the statement said. This educational foundation served as a stepping stone for the creative activities that followed.

With an introduction to AI, the children embarked on a journey of discovery into the world of artificial intelligence. They learned about AI’s capabilities, its ethical implications, and its potential as a tool to inspire change.

Equipped with AI resources provided by Climate Action Africa, the young participants dabbled in generating prompts and characters, thereby gaining hands-on experience in harnessing AI’s potential.

The pinnacle of the day was the children’s collaboration to create short animations highlighting the impact of climate change on communities.

This artistic endeavour merged their newfound knowledge of climate change with their creative abilities, highlighting the potential of AI to facilitate meaningful storytelling.

Simeon Irabor, reverend father and parish priest of Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Catholic Church, said, “The integration of faith and technological innovation represents a unique approach to tackling the environmental crisis.”

“Our collaboration with Climate Action Africa underscores the importance of unity in safeguarding our planet for future generations.”

Read also: Africa needs $3trn to bridge climate finance gap

Loretta Amaefuna, one of the participating children, expressed her excitement about the program’s impact. “I have learned that climate change is bad for my community and that I have the power to make things right. The animations we created showed me that we can make a difference even as kids.”

Preliminary findings from the assessment conducted to ascertain project impact on participants indicate that about 85 percent of them now grasp the fundamentals of climate change, while 70 percent have exhibited increased enthusiasm for environmentally conscious activities.

These figures underscore the promising potential of the F4CA program to ignite a passion for climate action within the hearts of the youth.