To take a quote from the Selena Movie “me siento muy…… excited” to be a part of the TEDxCherryCreek climate countdown. Being one of ten children I LOVE to talk and share my ideas (sometimes too much and to random strangers in the grocery store). So knowing that I have the opportunity to share my idea for thousands to hear means the absolute world to me and I still haven’t figured out how to ONLY talk for 12 minutes maximum! LOL! I am lucky that my big family has helped me prepare my speech because I don’t know about yall, but my toughest critics are my siblings and I always know they will provide me with honest feedback. Mi madre on the other hand was not as helpful because she thought everything sounded really really good. MOMS am I right!
I am passionate about climate change and environmental justice so the process of being accepted and sharing my idea has been a lifelong dream. There is so much power in storytelling. Storytelling is how my ancestors passed down their traditions and customs. Storytelling is such a rich part of my identity and culture. But it is not just my voice and my story that matter. What I learned about power and privilege is knowing when you are taking up space and how to use your platform to invite voices that are often left out in the mainstream environmental movement. Knowing that I get to share the stage and use my platform to highlight the voices of youth of color is what drives me to continue to teach environmental justice to the brilliant youth scholars.
I think the most challenging aspect of this talk prep is how I am going to authentically share the voices of youth and their perspectives on environmental justice. Youth have a lot to say about the future of their planet and I want to make sure I am sharing their message in an honest way and inviting them to the table. Because ultimately they are the future and the future of the planet is in our hands. We must act.