The Climate & Me

A series of free online events about the climate, 14th-16th Feb 2021. Come to what appeals to you – and think, feel, laugh, cry and be inspired to act on climate change.

The zoom link to the event is the same for the whole 3 days, so you can just turn up to the bits you are interested in using this link. You can down load a complete timetable of events here. We also encourage you to look at our Cimate and Me Pledge page here if you want to take action.

7.30-8.30pm Mon 15th. Spirituality and the Climate Crisis: how is faith interlinked with caring about climate change?  Talks and discussion with the following speakers from Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Sikh and Christian and Buddhist communities. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

Leicester Muslim, Aamenah Patel. “God has placed us as custodians of the Earth. As Muslims, we can draw from the Quran and the life of Prophet Muhammad to truly care for God’s creation and address climate change.”

Edith Husk, a Leicester Buddhist:”Buddhism emphasises mindfulness – paying attention to the present moment with loving awareness. ‘The present moment is the substance from which the future is made’. (Quote from Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh.)”

Devena Chouhan from Hindu Climate Action. “As a Hindu, it is my dharmic duty; the principles that govern my reality and leads me to what is morally right, that direct me into having an active interest in sustaining a healthy planet. Another central concept at the core of Hinduism is Karma, meaning every action has a consequence – so there is a clear relationship between one’s action and one’s future fate. This illustrates the continuity and intimate relationship among all beings, and aligns Hindus with actively protecting the environment.” Hindu Climate Action is a member of our Climate Coalition.

Dr Hardeep Singh, from EcoSikhUK. “The Sikh way of life is about living in harmony with nature and not to control it. We live in a time where humans, who wish to control nature, are polluting the air, water and soil. Respecting the air as if it were our spiritual master, respecting the water as if it were our own father and respecting the soil as if it were our own mother, is a beautiful message for all humans to put into practice, so that future generations will benefit from clean air, water and soil and live in a pollution free, healthy planet.”

Leicester Jew, Rachel Benn. “In Judaism, we are taught that one of the greatest commandments is ‘Tikkun Olam’, which means ‘repairing the world.’ To me, this is one way in which climate action and Judaism are linked – doing whatever we can to repair and preserve the world for this and future generations of every species on earth.”

Erica and Anthony Lees-Smith, Christian father and daughter. “Jesus turned over the tables in the Temple against injustice and we shouldn’t be afraid to do the same – the climate crisis is a justice issue I think all Christians need to engage with.” Erica. “My concern about the climate crisis was initially driven more by my daughter’s passion than by my faith but she has helped me to learn that care for creation is essential to my calling as a Christian.” Anthony.


7.30pm, Sun 14th and 6.45pm Tues 16th. Climate Change and Me. People with links and family from across the world spoke about what they are seeing and how it feels watching the effects of climate change on the people they love. These talks were recorded and will be on our climate change experiences page shortly.

Alisha Cover from speaks about Jamaica, St Ann, and how climate change has changed the availability and quality of crops and the climate of Jamaica in the mountains – and shares a video clip from her relatives there.

Dr Momodou Sallah: “Global Youth Work is a pedagogical approach, building on Development Education and Global Education that seeks to, in the first instance, promote consciousness and then support commensurate action, to reduce the imbalance, by those most affected. Using examples of running Africa’s first solar powered taxi service in The Gambia, a compressed earth brick machine, and locally made solar dryer, this short presentation will illustrate examples of combatting environmental degradation and dealing with climate change, after foregrounding it with the issues under discussion.”

Leicester based Ded D’Sillva speaks about her experience of surviving Dengue fever which is becoming more widespead in Sri Lanka as climate change alters local environments and encourages invasive species.

Kate Milman from Derbyshire in England speaks about her house being flooded just over a year ago – and knowing that it may well continue to be flooded repeatedly from now on.

Masaba Rogers from Uganda talks about the changing weather and rains impacting on his work and village.

Mick Westrip, an organic food grower from the Welsh boarders: “We are a 3 acre certified organic small holding, growing a wide range of produce. We established here in 2008 and have already recognised changes in our local climate in that short period, which will almost certainly lead to more challenging growing.”

Benter Ndeda: “On the shores of Lake Victoria in Western Kenya, climate change has caused unpredictable weather, from flooding to drought. For our rural community already living a hand to mouth existence, some families lost either their homes or their crops in March due to the floods.”

Ashish Agrawal will talk about  Kedarnath landslide in North India, a disaster killing 5000+ people which was a result of man made ecological imbalance in the region.

A couple of young women from After18 (a charity supporting Leicester’s young refugees) will talk about their experiences of storm and flood in Vietnam and Afghanistan.

Hafsah Hafeji a horticulturalist from Leicester talks about how climate change has impacted growing food in urban Leicester.

James Kataliko: “I will talk about the destruction of the forests in the East of the Congo and its impact on the life of indigenous peoples. The forest does not belong to us alone.”

Alison Crane speaks about wildfires, hailstorms and heatwaves in Australia: “Even in an Australian city, the bush fires of summer 2019-20 impacted my son and his family with smoke and air pollution. Coupled with record temperatures in the 40s, it wasn’t safe to go outside.”


8-8.45pm, Tues 16th. Concert: Songs for a Changing Climate by Camilla Cancantata, composer, musician and climate activist. Reflections in words and music on the times we live in. It’s time for humans to stop imposing change on everything else around us, and start to change ourselves. Time’s running out –  can we learn to co-exist with the rest of life on this planet and finally call a halt to wilful destruction?  To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.


4- 4.45pm on Sun 14th, Mon 15th and Tues 16th Feb. The Climate Food show, with Hafsah Hafeji and Zina Zelter. Along with videos of local people from all walks of life making climate friendly food from many countries (see below) we’ll chat about what thoughts come up about the climate crisis when we think about food – be it global climate justice, the conversations we have over food, or what changes the carbon footprints of specific foods. Bring your feelings about climate change and join the conversation. The following people will demonstrate the foods below. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link. You can download the recipes here: low carbon foods from around the world.

Fasolia (Libyan bean soup) from Saja Elmishry: “Fruitful conversations happen over a meal and I want to highlight the different topics that can be discussed over a low carbon food that is a traditional Libyan cuisine. By showcasing a variety of meals, we show how different people from all walks of life can be included in the sustainability conversation as well. We can only benefit from each other by having all of us present and taking part in conversations that are inclusive in terms of topics but also people. Simply put, in order to solve this climate change crisis, we need to have representation.”

Lentil and tomato soup from Marcus Laming: “Lentil and tomato soup is good for the environment because basil and tomatoes can be grown in your own garden so you don’t have to get them from another country in a shop.”

Nusayba aged 12 with mum Nazia, present how to make Pau Bhaji (cauliflower, potato and pea curry) along with information about the carbon footprints of the ingredients.

Fröknäcke, Swedish seed crackers from Vendela McNamara: “This vegan recipe is very more-ish and it’s nice to have a savoury snack on hand that’s homemade rather than arriving in lots of plastic and paper packaging having been transported round the country 6 times!”

Potato curry, from Devena Chouhan: “This delicious potato curry is cheap, feeds the masses and can easy be adapted if you have differing tastes. This recipe requires locally produced vegetables – so no air miles – and a lot of the other ingredients we grow in our garden in the Summer, making it very sustainable.”

M’jeddrah, Zina Zelter: ” I’m making this lentil, rice and onion dish because it’s a comfort food (the vast amount of fried onions taste and smell so good), has a fabulously low carbon footprint, is wonderfully easy to make, and is delicious. The recipe came from a Lebanese friend of my mum and I use it a lot.”

Steve Massey will talk about cooking using the fresh, seasonal and very local ingredients of a Leicestershire based Community Supported Agriculture project, Community Harvest Whetstone.

Karyn Aviani makes Mac-no-cheese: “This is a recipe I developed last year. It’s vegan and does not contain vegan cheese, which is highly processed, unhealthy and has a high carbon footprint. This recipe can be made using vegetables that are grown in the UK, in the garden or usually found in a veg box. The other ingredients are easily available through Suma Wholefoods, a wholefood cooperative that maintains high ethical standards both in regard to climate change and employment practices.”

Rajiv Shah, chilli chunky carrot and sweet potato mash: ” I like making this dish because the ingredients are available all year round. It’s easy to make and can be adapted to use potatoes instead of sweet potatoes.”

Beetroot brownies, Jude Casson: “We all enjoy a little sweetness now and then and beetroot in a brownie helps provide some of this naturally in a veg that is easy to grow.” You can find the recipe here.

Sweet potato and groundnut stew, Anne Scott: “I chose this recipe because it is a family favourite. It is environmentally friendly as it contains no meat or dairy ingredients and the vegetables can be grown in the UK.”

Flapjacks from Kate Unwin: “I make these flapjacks most weeks. I use local and/or organic ingredients to minimise the food miles and the damage to the planet caused by chemicals and pesticides. Most of the ingredients I buy in bulk to reduce trips to the shops and unnecessary packaging. Cooking snacks in advance means I don’t need to buy packaged foods when I’m travelling or working away from home.”


Workshops and Talks so far:

11 – 11.45am, Sun 14th Feb. Talk: Climate, Cargo and Commonsense with Helen Butterfield from Climate Action’s Transport Group. An opportunity to hear about and discuss reducing the impact of freight on climate change. The goods transport sector is one of the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK, and Leicestershire is at the heart of this as diesel trucks, vans and roads are mainly used to transport goods around the country. This talk will look at some of the alternatives which could help to stop our freight industry stop driving climate change – such as ‘last mile’ freight hubs, electric cargo bikes, rail interchanges and hydrogen fuel. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

12-12.45pm, Sun 14th Feb. Workshop: Guess the food footprint with Mel Gould from Footpaths. This interactive food game designed by Footpaths will leave you with an understanding of which foods have high and low carbon footprints and why – and no, it really isn’t primarily about food miles and packaging!  Footpaths is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

1-1.30pm, Sun 14th Feb. Talk from EcoSikhUK. This talk will focus on the practical steps EcoSikhUK have taken over the last 2 years to engage the UK Sikh community in serving the air, water and soil for future generations. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.


1.45-2.45pm, Sun 14th Feb. Workshop: Think like a Tree with Samantha Woods. This workshop will be an interactive introduction to Think Like a Tree – a design system created by Sarah Spencer. All living things share natural principles that allow them to grow, stay healthy, be adaptable, develop resilience, become connected and pass on what they’ve learned. Think Like a Tree helps us to access the wisdom of the forest so we can live happier, healthier and more productive lives ourselves – especially important in a time of climate change. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

3-3.45pm, Sun 14th Feb. Talk: Restoring our railways, with Bruce Wakley from the Campaign to Reopen the Ivanhoe Line (CRIL).  The Ivanhoe Line runs from Burton to Leicester and was closed to passenger services in 1964. CRIL started in 2018 and is one of the ten winners in the first round of schemes competing to win government backing as part of the Restore Your Railway initiative, launched by the government in March 2020. This talk details what has happened since the line was closed to passengers, the efforts to get it reopened to passengers and where we are today, an evolving story. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

5-6pm, Sun 14th Feb. Discussion. Leaving the car at home: How do we make it happen? Organised by Leicester Friends of the Earth with speakers Lindsay Broadwell City Councillor, Mel Gould who works for Sustrans, and Bernard Marriott from Leicester Campaign for Better Transport. In 2017, greenhous gas emissions from road transport made up around a fifth of the UK’s total emissions. To reduce this we need to persuade people to leave the car at home – but how do we make that easier for everyone? Come and listen to a conversation between politicians and activists and bring along your own suggestions. Leicester Friends of the Earth is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

6.15-7pm, Sun 14th Feb. Elaine’s Climate Quiz. How much do you know about climate change facts and figures? Come to Elaine’s short quiz on the Climate and Ecological Emergency, and find out – and have fun. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

10-10.45am, Mon 15th Feb. Climate literacy for children aged 5-7yrs (keystage 1) with Melanie Wakley (Hello Mr World by Michael Foreman). This is a storytelling session to raise awareness of the problems with our planet – followed by a craft. Children will need a sheet of A4 white paper, a pencil and some crayons. Parents are welcome (and encouraged).  Mr World doesn’t feel well. He’s hot and sweaty and finding it hard to breathe. Can the doctors find out what’s wrong with him? To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

Talk: The Role of ‘Intentional Communities’ in implementing climate change practice with Martin Fields from East Midlands Community Led Housing. This presentation considered the current opportunities for ‘intentional communities’ in the UK to place climate change practices at the heart of their daily operations. It looked at examples of Cohousing neighbourhoods, ecovillages and other collaborative housing settings, and what policies could support more community projects to drive their climate change principles forward. You can see the power point slides used in the presentation here: Intentional communities and climate change.

12.15-1.00pm, Mon 15th Feb, Talk: Climate Change and Trade Justice in the Global South, with Alison Skinner chair of Global Justice Leicester. This talk will cover the impact of climate change affected weather on people in the Global South and describe the current campaigns of Global Justice Now to ensure more democratic scrutiny of trade deals and highlight the ways in which trade deals can prevent countries in the Global South from adopting policies which might reduce global emissions. Global Justice Leicester is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

1.15-2.00pm, Mon 15th Feb, Talk: A year of activism on HS2 and the Climate Emergency with Karen Wildin of Extinction Rebellion. Karen will talk about life in the camps and the trees to the shifting environmental , economic and political position of High Speed Rail. Followed by discussion. Extinction Rebellion Leicester is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

2.15-3.45pm, Mon 15th Feb, Workshop: Interactive Introduction to Permaculture with Transition Leicester’s Sam Woods. Permaculture methodology helps us to design our lives according to three ethics of Care of the Earth, Care of People and Fair Shares. The design tools and processes which make up the body of permaculture thought, have been evolving since the concept first emerged in the 1970’s. They assist with leading meaningful and productive lives whilst treading lightly upon the Earth. Transition Leicester is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

5-7pm, Mon 15th Feb, Our feelings about climate change Empathy Circle, with Marta Neto. In this online Empathy Cafe we will use the Empathy Circle – a structured dialogue process that is simple and easy to learn – to share our feelings about climate change. It is different from normal conversation in that we slow down taking turns in speaking and active listening so that each person feels fully heard to their satisfaction. More information about the method can be found here and here. Please arrive early as once we start, latecomers will not be admitted. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

10-10.45am Tues 16th Feb. Climate literacy for children aged 7-11 (keystage 2) with Melanie Wakley (My Green Day by Melanie Walsh). Here are 10 things we can all do to make every day a green day.  This is a storytelling session to raise awareness of how we can help our planet – followed by a craft. Children will need a sheet of A4 paper, a pencil and some crayons. Parents are welcome (and encouraged). To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

11-11.45am, Tues 16th Feb. Workshop: Learn to make a facemask or T-shirt hankie, with Jill Fisher and Zina Zelter of Footpaths: Routes to a greener life. They make great gifts – so soft on your nose when you have a streaming cold – and are an easy way to learn to sew. You will need an old T-shirt which is past wearing, a needle, scissors, sewing cotton and elastic or string (for behind your ears on the mask). Pins would be useful but aren’t essential. Footpaths is part of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

12-1pm, Tues 16th Feb, Talk: Leicester’s Workplace Parking Levy. Adam Clarke, Deputy City Mayor for Environment and Transportation, will talk about the City Council’s plans to introduce a Workplace Parking Levy in order to reduce car use and improve public transport in the city, and then take questions and comments. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

1.15-2.00pm, Tues 16th Feb, Dumping Santa and Discussing Donuts, with Anna Walsh. Poetry and economics. Yes…together! But don’t be scared. Anna gets emotional about fair and sustainable economic ideas and the consumerism of Christmas.  Then she makes it rhyme and shares it with you. If you don’t think you like poetry or economics, this could be for you.‘Her enthusiasm makes up for her lack of expertise’Anna’s Mum. Suitable for anyone over the age of believing in Santa Claus. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.

Intro to Tools of SAL image.jpg2.30-3.30pm, Tues 16th Feb, Workshop: Climate Listening Circle taster session, led by Cee Martin, assisted by Pam Bellinger from Extinction Rebellion Leicester. Climate Activism can be physically and emotionally draining. Come and experience sharing time in a peer group and help create the safety for people to explore and process their thoughts and feelings. We will listen to each other with respect and in confidence, both in the whole group and in pairs or threes. This process makes us more effective at caring for ourselves and others, and is something we can all learn to do. Extinction Rebellion Leicester is a member of our Climate Coalition. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.
5.45-6.30pm, Tues 16th Feb, Sharing Nature Poetry with Aasiya Bora. For many of us the start point for caring about climate change is having a connection to nature. Living as we do, it can sometimes be hard to keep or grow this connection, and for some of us, nature poetry acts as a start point. This session is a chance to bring one or two of your favourite nature poems and share them with others, but you are also welcome to just come and listen. Nature and words are beautiful, lets celebrate them. To register, click here – or just turn up at the right time using this link.