Monday, 14 December 2020 23:20

#Giffoni50 Winter Edition opens under the sign of hope: the new generations will know how to save the planet

The war to climate change at the center of the first appointment. After the screening of the documentary NOW, the Q&A with activists Lights, Hansch and Mahlauz

A hope for the future that is entrusted to the new generations who understand better than adults how the battle against climate change is the only possible antidote to the spell of a sick world, of a planet in agony. Optimism is the red thread, or rather green, of the first appointment of #Giffoni50 Winter Edition which was entirely dedicated to environmental issues through the vivid witness of those who spend their energies to affirm values ​​and ideals concretely through actions, awareness campaigns, civil disobedience actions in their everyday lives.

First, therefore, the screening of the documentary NOW, helmed by Jim Rakete and distributed in Italy by Wanted Cinema, reserved for Generator +13, Generator +16 and Generator +18 as well as to the participants of the Impact section and the Italian hubs of Giffoni.

Followed by the very interesting Q&A led by Teresa Argovino, a young environmental engineer, sustainable tourism consultant and member of the Giffoni Dream Team with Zion Lights, a British author known for her advocacy and scientific communication work, Nike Mahlhauz, a German activist, spokesperson for the organization "Ende Gelände" and Marcella Hansch, architect and founder of Everwave, formerly Pacific Garbage Screening. All three provided an interesting witness in the NOW documentary screened today. the ideas that provided the choral reflection that emerged from today's Q&A were very interesting too.

The meeting saw the participation and interaction of Giffoni jurors as well as of the members of GIffoni Factory and representatives of the hubs present throughout the country. Many questions were asked to the three activists who wanted to give a very personal indication of their own path from a personal standpoint and a professional one also. In their experiences the desire to change the planet, but the difficulties in pursuing such an ambitious goal also emerged. Their narration was, therefore, interesting and very engaging.

"I quit my job to be an activist - said Marcella Hansch - I was an architect. I founded my organization which today also represents my work. It was a natural choice because I have always enjoyed activism. I wanted to do something useful for the planet. That's why I didn't hesitate to leave my job ». A sort of mission, as Zion Lights talks about her encounter with the world of activism: «For me - she said - it all started very early. I was eight and was already recycling. I was being teased by everyone, but I continued undeterred. Therefore, I immediately felt the need to do something for our planet ». For Nike Mahlhauz, activism is something genetic: "I come from a family - she said - in which the need to protect the environment was natural. At home, recycling was normal. Then I started to have a kind of anxiety about what was going on around us. I started looking for a place where I could use this anxiety to turn it into action. In 2017 I found "Ende Gelände" and I immediately felt at home. I needed to do something concrete and this is a place where I could fulfill this purpose ».

 Of course, activism often clashes with the needs of every day, with the need to work, with other life expectations. The three activists make no secret of this, however, underlining how often this need, this urgency, that of dedicating oneself to the wellbeing of the planet, can become an occupation: "The most important thing - said Zion Lights in this regard - is to find a community of people who believe in the same things you believe in, a community that becomes your family ». Marcella Hansch's experience confirms this possibility: "For two years - she said - I have been a full-time activist. I founded a non-profit ccompany that today has a thousand members and I receive lots of emails in which they thank me for what I do. But you don't have to be an activist 24 hours a day. The important thing is to make small daily gestures. From these small gestures great things can be born».

Of course there are great campaigns to be supported, but there is a battle more difficult than others, which is the one against people's pessimism and cynicism: "I am mostly an optimist - said Marcella Hansch - Obviously there are so many pessimists who have the effect on me of giving me even more motivation to move forward».

«The pessimism of others - echoed Zion Lights - does not lead me to want to do more. But I'm still an optimist because I really believe in human beings. Men have done so much to improve the world. And they will continue to do so ». For Nike Mahlhauz, the way out lies in making people understand that climate change is a problem that exists now and not a matter of the future: "If you go to countries in South America or Africa - she said - you can collect lots of stories that tell us how climate change is more than a real problem. It is the West that has not yet fully understood this "

Hope closes the discussion, the desire to look and think positively: «It's up to the new generations - Marcella Hansch said at the end - to understand that we have gone too far. However, I am convinced that they are already on the right track and have already understood that it is time to take action ».

Today's meeting is part of the numerous activities proposed by # Giffoni50 Winter Edition which, until December 30th, will be divided into different sections with a very rich program designed for the whole family. Films in competition, shows, masterclasses, special and live events, all in digital experience, will keep company not only with children, but also with their parents. In a few days the complete program will be presented that sees Giffoni, once again, alongside its community to experience the magic of Christmas together.

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