Enfluencers: Community of Young Ethiopians Advocating for Climate Change

Ethiopian youth in Enfluencers are leading the way in climate change advocacy, working to raise awareness and inspire action among their peers.

Enfluencers is a community of young individuals who advocate for climate change and work with local communities and the youth through capacity building in Ethiopia.

Co-founder Jodahi Bezabih Petrosi, who has a background in Applied Biology and a Master’s in Environmental & Sustainable Development, has maintained his trajectory in advocating for the environment, a habit he reveals having maintained since childhood.

Growing up, as a child, Jodahi was once punished by his mother for having thrown away trash. This simple action, he says, has been impactful to his career. “Out of something small came about a deep-rooted passion years later to avoid tossing trash and instead recycle it,” says Jodahi Bezabih Petros.

As a youth in the climate space, he says that the youths in his home country Ethiopia are considering the climate crisis a concrete issue that needs proactive urgency in dealing with it.

Youths need to be inspired to research in this space, to get to understand that this issue is crucial. On this, he says the climate crisis needs to be told in a way that the youths are shown the value bestowed in preserving, protecting, rehabilitating, and conserving. To attain this, there is a need to make the climate change narration more appealing in that it builds momentum as it signifies a sense of harmony amongst the people.

Jodahi Bezabih Petros and his colleagues in a discussion

“In Ethiopia, our Prime Minister’s initiative that led the people in planting up to 567Milliom seedlings were planted in one day, which would be attained as a result of the togetherness of the people in this journey,” adds Jodahi Bezabih Petros.

As a co-founder of Enfluencers, I have mostly been inspired to be in a rural place. Having grown up in Addis Ababa inspired the journey I have partaken in within the climate space. Urban spaces inspire my journey more in that the more you get away from the city, the more you realize that our cities are way polluted from sound, air, and water pollution.

Having grown in urban centers, it enabled the understanding of various diverse issues that can be essential in addressing the most viable solution for the crisis at hand. That first and foremost entails and calls for climate consciousness as essential, which will then guide their actions to ensure that they meet the SDGs’ sustainable development goals.

“The conversation should be made more familiar to the youths for example by sensitization of the concept of sustainability, like planting bamboo and using its end products for money, construction, and a source of employment. Also, recycling can be practiced and sustained amongst the people by showing them the end products, like my mum recycles shoe laces for bracelets, and it’s an amazing lesson indeed,” says an elated Jodahi of Enfluencers.

The teaching of the youths, he says, entails their hands-on skills through forums and workshops, making these actions also a source of living for them and in addition assisting in solving the unemployment crisis.

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