Young environmentalists win prize to help their schools become more climate conscious

Winners of the Young Green Shoots competition receive their prizes
Winners of the young green shoots competition receive their prizes.

The winners and runners up of Warwickshire and Coventry's climate change competition, Young Green Shoots, have received their coveted prizes following a fierce race for the climate prize.

The winners and runners up of Warwickshire County Council and Coventry City Council’s climate change competition, Young Green Shoots, have received their coveted prizes following a fierce race for the climate prize.

In support of the international agreement to tackle climate change, confirmed at COP26 last year, Warwickshire and Coventry are taking local action. Part of this has involved a competition which asked children and young people across the region to show what being a climate hero meant to them. The aim was to give them the chance to become advocates in fighting the climate crisis and to raise awareness that climate heroes do both big and small things, from planting a huge forest to turning off the lights when they aren’t needed.

The competition generated over 200 entries from pupils aged between 4 to 15, with pieces ranging from essays, poetry, photographs, paintings and even a sculpture. The entries were judged by Ed Green from the Wildlife Trust, David Mond from Warwickshire Climate Alliance and Laaiqah Iqbal from Warwickshire Youth Council, who chose the following winners for each age category.

  • 4 – 7 age category: Elina Williams, Ettington Primary school
  • 8 – 11 age category: Shirley Jo Slade, Tysoe C of E Primary School
  • 12 – 15 age category: Oliver Peake, Lawrence Sheriff School

Runners up of the competition are:

  • 4-7 age category:
    • Florence Stokes, Woodside C of E Primary School
    • Tahmeed Anaam – Cannon Park School
  • 8 – 11 age category:                    
    • Penny Williams, Lillington Primary school
    • Lily Finch, Southam St James School
  • 12 – 15 age category:
    • Martha Pearson – Alcester Grammar School
    • Emilia Hone – North Leamington School

Warwickshire County Councillor Heather Timms, Portfolio Holder for Environment, Climate & Culture, joined by competition judges, met some of the winners at Ryton Pools Country Park this week to thank them and award their prizes. Each child received a sustainable goody-bag and the schools of the three winners will be given £2,500 in funding from Warwickshire County Council’s Green Shoots Community Fund for their school or college to spend on climate change related projects.

A special prize was also awarded to Florence Stokes of Woodside C of E Primary School in North Warwickshire who entered the 4 – 7 category while in hospital. Florence has been working with her Headteacher to create a Friendship Garden and the school will also receive £2,500 to develop this and other climate friendly projects.

Councillor Heather Timms, Portfolio Holder for Environment, Climate & Culture, said:

“From the number of entries we received, and the detail that went into each and every one of them, we can firmly say that children and young people care deeply about climate change and the climate crisis.

“This is why we created Young Green Shoots – for them to learn about climate change through creativity and to contribute to discussions about the environment and become advocates for positive change.

“As part of our commitment to creating a Child Friendly Warwickshire, we must all come together to listen to children and young people, give them a voice and inspire them to take action and create lasting and positive changes for their future. The £2,500 in funding will help to support this, but we will also take onboard all of the amazing ideas to tackle the climate crisis we received through this competition.

“Congratulations to the winners and runners up, and well done to everyone who entered – their efforts will be the legacy in making sure Coventry & Warwickshire is well on the way to achieving our climate change ambitions.”

Councillor Jim O’Boyle, Cabinet Member for Jobs, Regeneration and Climate Change at Coventry City Council said:

“Our city and region’s young people are very switched on to the issues of climate change and that showed in the number and quality of entries.  

“I want to congratulate every pupil and every school that took part. 

For more details on Warwickshire’s commitment to the climate crisis, visit: https://www.warwickshireclimateemergency.org.uk/

To find out more about Child Friendly Warwickshire, visit: https://www.childfriendlywarwickshire.co.uk/  

Photo left - right: 12-15 winner Oliver Peake; 12-15 runner up Emilia Hone; 4 – 7 runner up Tahmeed Anaam, Cllr Heather Timms, David Mond, 8-11 winner Shirley Jo Slade, Ed Green, 4 – 7 winner Elina Williams, 12-15 runner up Martha Pearson.

Published: 16th March 2022