What was the Promise to Protect Training Tour?
The Promise to Protect Tour came to 9 cities across the United States this spring and helped train 1,160 organizers to follow Indigenous leadership and learn how to take nonviolent direct action against fossil fuel infrastructure from coming into their communities. Organizers were provided the opportunity to understand how to organize locally while being a part of a broader, unified movement to stop the fossil fuel industry. We have such a short window to address the climate crisis and we need to escalate to the scale of the problem – and this tour was a great start.
Spanning from Oakland to Miami, the Promise to Protect Tour helped build solidarity between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous activists by teaching folks how to be a good relative and to amplify allyship and strategic action. It also helped solidify a collective understanding of the work and approach needed to build a movement strong enough to stop the most powerful industry in the world–and the politicians that are beholden to them– from continuing to put communities and our climate at risk.
Our highlight reel
Organizers who participated in the training deeply engaged with lessons such as how to appropriately fill support roles in a nonviolent direct action, protocols for mobilizing in Lakota territory, and how to bring these skills back to their communities to take local action.
What organizers are saying about the Promise to Protect Training Tour this spring:
I am inspired greatly by how as a large group the tour reflected learning new ideas of relating to one another with such a diverse group of attendees. I am also moved by the connections that attendees made with one another sharing the common interest in Promising to Protect. – Dita Devi, Miami
The Promise To Protect training in Boston brought together community members and climate organizers from around New England with Indigenous allies to reconfirm our commitment to joining them on the frontlines of Keystone XL, fossil fuel infrastructure fights, and other struggles when called upon by Indigenous leaders. By building new relationships and rekindling old ones, we are building a movement to keep fossil fuels in the ground and move towards a just and equitable future. – Alan Palm, Boston
The bay area promise to protect tour stop was inspirational! People from all walks of life attended, including a large group of wise women from the affinity group called 1,000 grandmothers. Many frontline activists were present such as Socorro, who came to meet others who are fighting big oil like she is in the bay area’s refinery corridor. After the Saturday training, some folks stuck around and others joined for the Protect the Bay Coalition’s Tar Sands Free SF Bay art build. The bay area now has hundreds of activists trained up on how to take direct action against the Keystone XL pipeline and how to respect Lakota protocol. A big thanks to the trainers and Promise to Protect tour organizers who made this all possible.– Mary Zeiser, 350 Bay Area
We spoke with 350.org Keep it in the Ground Campaign lead, Kendall Mackey to hear about what the Promise to Protect Team’s plans are after the training tour to continue ensuring communities have the tools to #keepitintheground.
“The most important thing people who attended the training tour can be doing right now is engaging in the local work happening in their communities stopping the expansion of the fossil fuel industry. It’s important we all stay vigilant and ready to mobilize if invited by the leadership on the ground to stop KXL, and we should be putting the skills built and the lessons learned through this tour into practice right now in the communities we live in. This movement has never been about one pipeline–it’s about building a movement large enough to take on the fossil fuel industry and win.” – Kendall Mackey, 350.org
As government leaders continue to try shutting down pipeline protestors and the wider movement work to stop the fossil fuel industry, we must continue to keep up the momentum. The tour was a catalyst for greater resource sharing, learning, and movement building that is so critical to the fight against dirty energy. We are excited to see what trainees will be bringing back to their communities, and how our team will continue to brainstorm and engage organizers nationwide who see the need to be part of this work and want to lead others to also take meaningful action.
Stay tuned for more work by signing on to the Promise to Protect at nokxlpromise.org.
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Later this week, kids will skip school again to take part in a massive global climate strike. Their demands are clear: urgent action to stop the climate crisis.
As adults in Europe, next week is our opportunity to not just hear the strikers’ call to action, but to also act on it. We have something the striking kids don’t yet have: the power to vote in the European elections.
If you can vote in an EU country, make sure to head to the polls between 23 and 26 May.  As you check the box, remember the kids marching on the streets for the climate, and vote as if their future depended on it: because it does.
Take a look at this short video and share it with your friends and colleagues on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or via Whatsapp!
It matters who gets elected. The new members of the European Parliament (MEPs) will pass laws, approve budgets, and have a say over who will serve on the next European Commission – the EU’s powerful executive arm. They could have a profound impact on the European Union’s response to the climate crisis over the next 5 years. This is a crucial time for action, as our window of opportunity to prevent the worst impacts of climate breakdown and go 100% renewable, shrinks rapidly.
Climate has never been higher on the headlines, and for the first time in the history of the European elections, it can be a decisive issue.  The EU is a huge global emitter of CO2, and it has a historic responsibility to champion climate solutions.
So as you vote for your representative in the European parliament this week, vote for candidates and parties who will put climate action at the top of their political agenda. People who have spoken about ending the era of fossil fuels and those behind green energy policies. 
The thousands and thousands of schoolkids going on strike this Friday 24 May, across Europe and the world, are showing us the way. It’s up to us to heed their call and take meaningful action. Together, we can make sure that the new MEPs know that we, their voters, care, and will hold them accountable over the next five years for their promises – and their actions.
 Voting takes place on a different day of the week in different EU member states. If you’re unsure of the exact date of the election in your area, you can double check here.
 Climate change will be key issue in EU elections, poll shows
 Many groups in different EU countries have published their analyses of parties’ and candidates’ manifestos and election programmes, which could help guide your vote, and are only a quick search away.
With classrooms unusually quiet but the streets of towns noisy and alive with young people marching and chanting, you can’t have missed the growing #FridaysforFuture movement. This Friday 24 May will be even noisier than usual with nearly 4000 school strikes in 150 countries planned around the world!
What first started as a one-person strike by a Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, has now gathered momentum and spread all across the world into the largest climate mobilisation ever. Kids are striking for climate, and for the future. The students are sending world leaders a powerful message: we want bold action on climate change, NOW.
If you’re a grown-up, parent, grandparent, a teacher, or simply an ally, and the striking kids have inspired you too, but you’re not sure how you can take action, read on.
Here’s 5 meaningful ways you can support the climate strikes:
It’s as simple as it sounds. Tell the people you know – young or grown-up – about the climate strike, share with them why it’s important. Tell them about Greta’s message of climate emergency, and show them one of her powerful speeches. Share with them this map of all 24 May strikes and invite them to join, or support, any follow-up strikes or climate actions in your area.
If you’re a parent or guardian, make it explicit that you allow your kids to go on strike, if they want to. Share it with your friends, colleagues, and family members. Lead others by example. Don’t underestimate the power you have to inspire your friends if you’re passionate about a cause.
But remember – your role is to listen and amplify, not step in and take over. Make sure you hear the concerns, hopes and beliefs of young people around you. Take them seriously. Be their ally in conversations you have with other adults: be explicit about your support, help bring the message of the striking students into spaces where they can’t be present.
Share this video on Facebook and Twitter to let your friends and family know about the climate strike.
Activate your own network (yes, you have one!) in support of the school strikes. Think of the organisations, clubs or faith groups you belong to. Maybe you’re in a parents group, or a bookclub? Talk about the school strikes at your next meeting; take to social media and share a public statement of support. Organise others for solidarity actions and events.
Take it even further: maybe you or your friends know a reporter at your local radio station or newspaper? Ask them to cover the school strikes. Maybe you’re on good footing with a local politician or someone from your municipality? Get in touch and ask them to help amplify the climate strikes – or not to discourage the mobilisations or penalise striking students!
If you’re part of an existing climate campaigning group, think of how you can escalate your actions around the strikers next action to keep the momentum going. Link your action explicitly to the school strikes (“We’re doing this because we’re answering the call of the striking students, and taking action”).
Think long-term: talk with your kids or other grown-ups about what could be done to keep up the momentum after 24 May. What are the practical things that are needed? Start a WhatsApp group, plan an informal get-together or a film evening.
If you’re a teacher or youth worker, make it a point to talk about the school strikes in your class. Mobilise your colleagues in school to talk to their classes as well. Even better: invite student strikers to talk with young people in your class. Don’t underestimate how young people relate to their peers. Make your support clear. Answer questions about how one can stay safe in a big crowd. Together with colleagues, speak to the school administration and tell them about your support for the school protest.
Share what you’re doing
Are you already supporting the school strikes, or intending to? Share it with us, and help us put together resources to inspire and motivate other grown ups.
In short: help make it possible, easy and safe for kids to attend the strikes, if they choose to.
Hands-on logistical support is often needed just as much as moral support. Buy your kids or grandkids a public transport ticket to get to the closest school strike. Prepare them a lunch bag or snacks to share with their fellow students.
Often it’s adults who need to register demonstrations, so you can really help the young people with any administrative issues they might face. Volunteer to be a steward for upcoming school strikes, a legal guardian or supervisor for a group of students wanting to join a strike.
Offer kids in your life support with arranging of preparing materials for signs and banners to take to the demonstration. Look for old cardboard or arts supplies in your house which they can re-use, or take them to the city to buy paper, markers and other things they need. Let your child host a “Make your own banner” evening at your house and let them invite their friends.
Show us how you’re preparing
We’re curious: how do you support the school strikes? We’ll collect your stories and amplify them to inspire more people to take action. Share your story of in text and pictures.
Most calls for school strikes ask for solidarity from adults, and welcome everyone to join.
If you choose to, you can join the strikes on May 24, by attending a march, rally or other mobilisation being planned in your area. But be mindful about your role as an adult in the protest. Stay on the sidelines, cheer the strikers on, take photos or videos (ask for consent if you photograph individuals!) and share what’s happening on social media to inform and inspire people who can’t join. Remember to add the #climatestrike and #fridaysforfuture hashtags!
When sharing content, make sure you let the protesters speak in their own words. You can do this for example by asking young people for a short statement on why they’re striking. Try to amplify voices of young people that you feel like are underrepresented in media. Describe the atmosphere, photograph the funniest banners, film the best songs and have fun!
Watch this beautiful moment captured by #FridaysForFuture students in Rome last week.
We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day, so let’s start giving
Where will you be rallying tomorrow?#ClimateStrike #SchoolStrike4Climate pic.twitter.com/lQHq3Lbfcm
— 350.org Europe (@350Europe) February 28, 2019
5. Join or start a local group
Don’t let the young people do all the work! The climate crisis needs every single one of us to take action and fight for a fossil free future. The most meaningful way to support the school strikes is to listen, and respond, to their urgent call to action on climate change.
Check out this map of 350 and Fossil Free local groups and find the one closest to you. Sign up, write a message, go to the next meeting and get involved. Carry the energy of the youth climate movement into your own actions and organising. If you can’t find an existing group but feel motivated, sign up for an organiser’s starter pack, and we’ll help you set up your first local group or campaign!