TODAY Kempsey hosted an awareness rally for climate change. School students, families, individuals and other concerned residents gathered to show their commitment to the cause.
Angelina Burke was instrumental in organising the day, and despite it being the first event for the Kempsey region, she was impressed with the turnout.
"It's exciting to see so much passion and enthusiasm for the cause in the community, considering this was our first attempt at an event like this, it's really incredible how many people showed up," she said.
"We are here to raise awareness, and show how much climate change means to our generation, we are the future, and it's time we were listened to."
Kempsey Shire mayor Liz Campbell was also in attendance and reassured the amassed crowd that council were doing their best to address their concerns.
"Our climate is a fantastic social debate. It is fantastic to see young people involved and influencing the way the world is shaped for the future," she said.
We will be looking to hold something like this again in the future to help raise awareness and educate people.Angelina Burke
"Sustainability is important, it affects us all, at council we acknowledge the challenge that not only the climate presents, but also how we must approach a sustainable council philosophy.
"We are currently working on an initiative to incorporate critical issues such as climate change and sustainable living into council policy, strategy and action planning.
"The aim of this is a path towards a sustainable future for our valley with a key focus on how the council can lead by example, while also partnering with the community and industry."
The event coincided with the global School's Strike for Climate Action movement and had a march, interactive information stalls, an art gallery, and live music. Macleay Valley schools were not striking, but interested students could participate as a school-sanctioned environmental excursion.
There are no immediate plans for a repeat event next year, but Angelina hopes this won't be the end of the climate action movement in Kempsey.
"At the moment we are focusing on right now, but we will be looking to hold something like this again in the future to help raise awareness on this important issue, this isn't the end of it," she said.
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