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Young Into Film Fans Throw Spotlight on Climate Emergency

Pupils from a range of schools across south Wales are on the steps of the Senedd this afternoon (6 November) to highlight the opportunities available to us if we all take positive action to tackle the climate emergency facing the planet.

This is part of the Into Film Cymru Festival launch, taking place across Wales and the UK between 6 and 22 November, and follows a pupil premiere of award winning, climate change documentary 2040.

Politicians greeting the children are Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn; Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas;  Welsh Conservative Nick Ramsay AM; Chair of the Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee, Mike Hedges AM and others.

Children and young people attending the pupil premiere from Cadoxton Primary School, Barry, presented ideas and realistic solutions from pupils across Wales to the climate emergency and what they would like a greener Wales to look like in 2040. They were encouraged to showcase what they are already doing and to inspire more people to make a difference, following an exclusive viewing of climate emergency film 2040 as part of the Into Film Festival and ahead of its UK release. The film follows award-winning Australian filmmaker Damon Gameau’s search for new approaches and solutions to global warming for the sake of his young daughter’s future.

Hannah Blythyn, Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, said: “We are absolutely committed to doing everything we can to making Wales in 2040 the kind of country our young people can be proud of. We have a long, strong and proud record of promoting children’s rights in Wales. 

“As we celebrate 30 years of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child this November, I am pleased to receive this information which clearly shows children have the right to say what they think should happen and to have their opinions taken into account.”

Non Stevens, Head of Into Film Cymru said: Film is a powerful tool and this film encourages us to look at the creative and innovative opportunities available to us to make a change. This year marks the 7th Into Film Festival and 30 years of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and I can think of no better film than the environmental documentary 2040 as our pupil premiere, shown simultaneously in 40 venues across the UK.  

“It’s wonderful to see participating schools fired up and for Into Film to help shine a light on the Wales those young people want by 2040, where it has been possible to galvanise a global movement to invest in regenerative solutions that improve the wellbeing of the planet. Positive, practical and informative, it is an antidote to the eco-anxiety facing all of us – particularly our children – and I’m excited by their ideas for change.”

Mike Hedges AM, Chair of the Climate Change, Environment & Rural Affairs Committee, said: “I would like to congratulate Into Film Cymru on highlighting climate change and the well-being of the planet. Climate change and the resultant loss of habitat and the extinction of species at a rate not seen since the dinosaurs is the most important issue facing us. Unless we halt and then reverse climate change then the future of all animal life including humans is bleak.”

This year’s Into Film Festival will be celebrating the 30thanniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and with Unicef UK we are encouraging children and young people to celebrate this landmark moment and stand up for their rights and be inspired by young people in films and on screen to make a difference. As part of the pupil premieres, young audiences are encouraged to take part in the #WhatsYour2040 campaign, creating their vision for a sustainable future.

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The Into Film Festival, hosted by film education charity, Into Film is supported by Cinema First and the BFI through National Lottery funding and backed by the UK film industry. It is notably one of the biggest, free cultural events of the year and is curated for UK pupils aged 5-19 years, offering over 3,000 film screenings and speaker events covering a vast range of curriculum-linked topics.

The Into Film Festival 2019 takes place from 6th until 22nd November. All events and screenings are free. For programme information, to book tickets and download resources, including Welsh curriculum linked resources, visit: www.intofilm.org/festival