The following is a press release:
August 5, 2021, CAYMAN ISLANDS – Tahiti Seymour, an 18-year-old student, poet, writer, environmental activist and film maker from the Cayman Islands has been selected as the Caribbean youth leader for #Act4Food #Act4Change, the United Nations youth led movement for the 2021 Food Systems Summit.
There are currently 27 Food Systems Summit #Act4Food #Act4Change youth leaders originating from countries such as Kenya, Nicaragua, Ireland, Zimbabwe, China, Canada, Brazil, Indonesia, Fiji and Bangladesh, with close to 10,000 young people from around the globe who have participated in the Summit process.
Young people have been fully incorporated into leadership positions within the UN Food Systems Summit with the architecture designed to include young people from around the world.
Seymour’s primary means of driving food systems change will be through creative education.
“I spread a message of change through my creative platform- primarily through film. I have created a number of short environmental films to support the advocacy of local environmental organizations and I am currently working on a short film on food systems issues in my country,” she says.
During the past two years Tahiti has collaborated with a number of not-for-profits in a speaking capacity as well as through her creative advocacy work. Among them: The Youth Ambassadors Programme, Protect Our Future, The Mangrove Rangers and Plastic Free Cayman.
While completing high school studies in Canada, Tahiti collaborated with the team at Force of Nature, a youth-founded environmental advocacy organization, speaking on topics such as “Veganism in the modern world” and “A Zero-Waste Lifestyle.”
Tahiti believes that the arts are an excellent platform for youth activism and is currently producing a short film on food systems issues in the Cayman Islands.
“As a Caribbean Small Island Developing State, Cayman Islands’ food systems issues are highly intertwined with the climate crisis,” said Tahiti.
“Like other countries in the region, local farmers are plagued with frequent droughts, floods and other forms of extreme weather. In 2004, when I was just a baby, a category 5 hurricane, Hurricane Ivan ripped through my country, resulting in $2.86 billion in damages (183% of GDP). Given its size, Cayman is also heavily reliant on imports, with 90 per cent of all food consumed originating in the United States. These factors have resulted in unhealthy lifestyles and high rates of non-communicable diseases.”
Youth in the Caribbean and internationally can contribute to the objective of creating a more sustainable food systems future by joining #Act4Food #Act4Change. The United Nations youth-led campaign has launched a Global youth pledge and Actions for Change to call on governments to do everything they can to create a healthy and sustainable food system for the future.
Youth, under the age of 30, can make their pledge at https://actions4change.org .
Learn more about Tahiti and the other twenty-six food systems leaders at https://actions4food.org/en/youth-leaders/