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Climate change is a global pressing issue. In this film we are looking into the Psychology behind what people are thinking in relation to Climate change. Caroline Hickman a climate psychology expert and Dr Liz Marks a clinical and research psychologist share their views on how climate change is affecting us psychologically and how we can manage our anxieties in relation to climate change.

Check out our other Climate Change films from the series:

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-anxiety

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-multi-faith-views

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-buddhism

Climate Change: Psychology

Caroline: Hi. So my name is Caroline Hickman. I'm a psychotherapist and a lot of the work I do is supporting people with climate change, anxiety and distress. Eco anxiety is the healthy response that we have when we see what's happening to the planet. There's nothing wrong with feeling this. In fact, if you feel eco anxiety, it's because you care. You should be proud that you care.

 

Liz:         Hi, I'm doctor Liz Marks. I'm a clinical and research psychologist. Eco and climate anxiety are the words used to describe the different thoughts and feelings that lots of people have about what's happening with climate change, and the damage that's being done to the natural world. Although the term is eco anxiety, most people feel lots of different feelings. They might feel scared and anxious, but they might also feel quite down or sad. They might feel angry, and they often feel overwhelmed. All of these feelings are very valid and very normal. In response to what's happening to the climate at the moment.

 

Caroline: We're gonna have lots of mixed feelings about this and they all make complete sense. Think of yourself as a bus. So on this bus, you want to have all of your feelings, your anger, your despair, your optimism, your sadness, your anxiety, your rage. But you also need your I want to save the planet person to have a seat on the bus. It just depends who's got hold of the steering wheel on any one particular day. Don't try and get rid of your anxiety. Let it be part of the bus, but don't let it get hold of the steering wheel all day, every day. It can have its turn at the steering wheel and then the personality, the bus conductor, the part of you that is conducting the orchestra with all these emotions says, okay, you, you've had your turn now we're going to have calm and contented driving the bus for a bit. You need all of these different parts of you to take their turn.

 

Liz:         When you're experiencing anxiety. Quite a lot of different things happen in your brain and body, and the main thing is that chemicals and hormones are released. These chemicals and hormones travel through the body and make changes that prepares the body for the fight or flight response. And what that means is, when we're facing a threat, the body needs to get ready to respond to the threat by fighting it, by pushing it away or by running away the flight. And that's why things happen in the body. Like your muscles tense, you breathe more quickly. Your blood is being pumped around the body by the heart more quickly, so the body's basically ready for action. Anxiety is a completely natural, healthy, and useful human response. Without anxiety, we wouldn't be able to respond to threats in our environment, and we wouldn't be able to keep ourselves safe from those threats.

 

Caroline: We need our anxiety because it helps us. It tells us when we should be scared of something. We need our anger because it's good to get angry when things are threatening you, or you need to say no to someone who's trying to push you around. If something's hurt us, we need to feel upset. But you don't want to stay upset for a week. You want to be upset, say you're upset, deal with those feelings and let the upset and just move on. And that gives us the emotional intelligence and the emotional resilience that we need. How do we get resilience? Not by everything going perfectly or smoothly. We develop emotional resilience by struggling with things, by getting things wrong, by sometimes failing. And then you get back up and then you try again, and then you get back up, and then you try again. Each time you get back up and try again, your resilience grows and you get stronger and you get more able to deal with the ups and downs and the ins and outs of life. And then you start to get to the point where you think, I can, I can find a way through this, I can deal with this.

 

Liz:         So if you are feeling anxious or sad or angry or any other feelings, that's completely natural and healthy. However, it can also be very painful and distressing and overwhelming, and it can sometimes feel like you maybe can't stop it from happening. So it's also really important to look for support or help and people you can talk to about it to help you through.

 

Caroline: One way to think about this is think about yourself sitting on a rock surrounded by water, and just imagine your emotions and your thoughts flowing in the water around you so you're not disconnected from them. You can see them. You can stick your toes in the water. You can see your feelings, think your thoughts, but don't throw yourself off your rock. Don't go and immerse yourself too much in them. And if you do, fall off the rock, get back on the rock and observe and think about your feelings and your thoughts. You can say to yourself, I have a body, but I am not my body. I have thoughts, but I am not my thoughts. I have feelings, but I am not my feelings. You can both connect with them and identify with them, and then decide by so that you're not completely overwhelmed. If you feel anxiety, it is. Remember it is you who is feeling the anxiety. Don't become anxiety.

 

Liz:         Nature or being in nature can be a really positive thing for your mental health and well-being. There's loads and loads of evidence to show this, but don't take my word for it. Think about it yourself. Or go out into nature and see what happens to how you feel. Spending time with people who feel the same way can also be a really nice way of getting engaged with doing things that might give you a sense of being able to make a difference. People find that getting engaged in action, particularly in action with other people, is really, really good for helping them feel less overwhelmed by their eco anxiety. One of the things that's really helpful about it is it helps us to align what's important to us with what we're doing, and that's really good for our mental health and wellbeing. There are different types of action. There's the action that we can take as an individual. So for example, recycling more, cycling more and driving less and not flying so much. And perhaps we can convince people around us to do similar things. And then there's collective action or group action. And that's where we maybe join a group of people where sometimes we can make slightly bigger changes happen because there's more of us. But it's really important to to recognise that as an individual or even as somebody, as part of a collective or a group, there is only so much impact that we're going to have on climate change. So it's balancing that recognition that you can act on climate change and do what you want to do and do what you can do, but that ultimately it's not your responsibility or the responsibility of your group to solve climate change or to make the really big changes that the world needs to see. That responsibility lies with state authorities, with governments, with big business and powerful people. And sometimes the action that we need to take is getting them to see that it's their responsibility, not ours, as the individual.

 

Caroline: Any form of action, any form of activism is valuable. But remember, you want to balance up that external activism with internal activism. You also need to deal with how you feel as well as take action out there in the world. One of the difficulties is if you just focus on external action out there in the world and you feel that it's not enough and that other people are not doing enough, and yet you do more and more and more and it's still not enough is you can then just get overwhelmed or exhausted or what people call burnt out. So balance that up with having downtime. Take a night off, sit on the sofa, eat pizza, chill out with your friends, have time out and time off. As well as taking action. You are a person. You do not have to save the planet on your own. Working together, we can do something collectively and be more powerful. Your individual action is important, but you're also not personally responsible for all the problems on the planet. The thing about eco anxiety is it's not necessarily the same as other forms of mental health distress we wouldn't want to cure or fix or get rid of eco anxiety because it's an emotionally mentally healthy response. What we do need to do is understand it and make friends with it. We need to learn to work with it so that we're understanding that it's here for a reason. To motivate us to take action, to teach us to care, to help us build a better world for ourselves and our children and children all over the world. So the last thing I want to do is get rid of it. We really do need to understand that it's more of a moral upset and a moral injury than a mental illness. So the thing to do is acknowledge. Just recognize. Just tell yourself it's okay to feel a bit overwhelmed by this sometimes and take a step back. Take time out, take a break and just breathe and just relax and just know you're not the only one worrying about this. There's wonderful people all over the world lawyers, psychologists, teachers, educators, community activists, some politicians taking action on this. So you're part of that collective. You're not on your own.

 

Climate Change: Psychology

Video length - 09.52
Published date - May 2024
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4

Climate change is a global pressing issue. It affects everyone, irrespective of their religious beliefs. But in this film we are focusing on the viewpoints on the climate crisis from the Buddhist community. How does Buddhism tackle climate change and what are some of the steps they are taking help alleviate the problems we are facing.

Check out our other Climate Change films from the series:

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-anxiety

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-multi-faith-views

Climate Change: Buddhism

Sean:       A Zen Buddhist is a tradition of Buddhism where there's a focus predominantly on meditation. The word Zen actually comes from a Sanskrit word, dhyana, and a Chinese word, chan, and it means meditation. So it's practicing Buddhism through meditation. Zen Buddhism Buddhism in general is not particularly a belief system. So Buddhism itself is kind of some guiding principles that are about people discovering their true nature. And the end result of that is to try and end suffering. So Buddha taught that life. Life is suffering. It contains suffering, old age, illness and death, and that there is a path through practice, through meditation, through how we live, whereby we can bring an end to the suffering we might experience. That doesn't mean that we won't die, but it means that we don't need to actually suffer. There is no distinction between it being the suffering of humans, or the suffering of plants, or the suffering of animals. As a practitioner of Zen Buddhism, my aim, as grand as it might seem, is to end the suffering of all beings. So you can't practice that without being concerned about nature.

 

David:     Basically, from a Buddhist point of view. Humans and nature are completely interdependent, but isn't very much about that. All things are interdependent with each other. So if we if we harm the natural world, we are harming ourselves. If we take care of the natural world, then we're taking care of ourselves. It's very simple. Of course, the Buddha, when he became enlightened, he was meditating underneath a tree. So he had great respect for trees. And actually, in a lot of Buddhist countries, there are Buddhist movements protecting trees and protecting rivers and things. It's always been very important in Buddhism. We follow Tibetan Buddhist traditions, Himalayan Buddhist tradition. It's a very, very fragile ecosystem there. So the people that are extremely environmentally conscious, and that's all part of, you know, the Buddhist practice.

 

Bell:        What I was saying earlier in my meditation to myself is nothing is anyone's and everyone is each other's. And I think that's a pretty spiritual way of looking at nature, I guess the oneness of it. That's what I'm trying to say. That there's no distinction between nature and you and you and nature and me and you and. Yeah, we've made distinctions and it's not very helpful.

 

Sean:       Buddhism and activism. There's been a lot written about it, so a term that resonates with me is Engaged Buddhism. So what can be a Buddhist and sit on a cushion and meditate and kind of hope that being a good person influences other people, and that will happen and it will ripple out. But then there is also a practice of saying, is that enough? Do you also need to get off the cushion and be visible and be a voice that stands up? So not taking life is one of the Buddhist precepts, but standing by while other life is taken isn't something that aligns with that either. So many Buddhists. Might struggle a bit. Finding the balance. There's a balance between doing something that is ultimately spiritual and something that's just very practical and worldly. But the two of them can't really be separated. My teacher's teacher describes Zen as a sword that cuts two into one. So this is about bringing the ordinary everyday world and the spiritual together and not seeing them as two separate things. So to be a good Zen Buddhist and a good Zen Buddhist teacher, which is what I try to be. You can't do that on your cushion alone. Do it on the cushion, and you do it out in the street and in the real world where people aren't, and certainly Extinction Rebellion Buddhists. It's a great family of people from all different Buddhist traditions who are aligned in that thinking that we must do more than just meditate at home.

 

Bell:        The overlap between climate activists and Buddhists. Big Venn diagram, big overlap there. I actually didn't know about the Extinction Rebellion Buddhist group until yesterday, and I have morphed over to it. And I've really enjoyed it. I found it really powerful because I automatically feel a connection to other bidders, even if I don't know them. There's a mutual understanding I feel at home. And to add on top of that, that everyone's here because they care about the climate. A lot of Buddhist ethics are about not doing harm, acting with deeds of loving kindness, being generous, being kind, being acting with integrity and authenticity. All of these things are the kind of things that everyone here is displaying, not just the Buddhists. I think Buddhists can bring something to climate activism that is needed. And I think that's this really beautiful way that we can display how we're channeling rage and anger into a peaceful and calm way of doing it.

 

David:     I think it's everybody's responsibility to look after the planet. We can't leave it to the government because the government is just a really projection of the mind of all the people. So if people are not being environmentally conscious, we're not going to get an environmentally conscious government. Um, we all depend on each other. We depend on the animals, we depend on the plants, we depend on the whole ecosystem. Um, and we can't there's nobody up there who's going to do it for us. So unless everybody takes responsibility, it's not going to happen.

 

Climate Change: Buddhism

Video length - 06.08
Published date - Apr 2024
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4

A short film following the experiences of two young women’s neurodivergence (Autism and ADHD) and the difficulties they encountered in the education system as they journeyed to understand themselves. This documentary highlights the issues surrounding diagnosis for women and girls in the UK and was created in partnership with the BFI during the BFI documentary residential 2024.

Not So Typical

Ruby: As a kid, I didn't really realise that I thought differently and I felt differently. I just felt like a bit of an outsider at times, and I felt like I didn't fully have control in how I was behaving and how I was feeling as much as other people did.

Eva: I had so many friendship issues in school. Um, primary school and secondary school specifically because I wasn't diagnosed, I ended up calling myself a nomad friend. I would move from group to group. I actually struggled really badly with bullying. That period of my life of just being like, I can't change who I am and you're bullying me for it. I got really upset.

Ruby:  I remember always feeling like I couldn't settle into a group in school. I got bullied quite badly through like year 7 to year 9 and that was all surrounding, like how I was like, and I never really fully understood it. But people were just always like, you're too much like you're too loud. You're too intense. If I didn't do my homework, it was because I was lazy or my attendance was really low because I couldn't be bothered to come into school kind of thing. Whereas there was actually like an issue that was going on that was just completely undetected. I was diagnosed with ADHD at 17 years old. I think when it came to getting my diagnosis, it took quite a long time. There's always waiting lists. I started looking into getting the diagnosis at around 15, and I didn't actually get my formal diagnosis and assessment until I was 17.

Eva: I was diagnosed with autism when I was 16, a month before my 17th birthday. My brother's diagnosis was the spurring point of mine. Girls are diagnosed later than boys, especially with autism and a lot of medical conditions. When they first did the research on the topic, they only did it on white boys. They only use them as their subject, and so their symptoms, in a way, are the ones that they look for.

Ruby:  I actually don't really know how I got through school with it being undetected by teachers, because I think, to be honest, like when I look back, I was quite textbook ADHD. I am someone that can't sit still. I've always been fidgety. There's a lot of issues with concentration. I've just felt very misunderstood at school and feel like when you're not made for the society that we live in, you are isolated within such a massive group of people and it can feel like so detrimental to like your mental health. When I think about it, it makes me feel really sorry for that girl, because at the time I was only like, you know, 14, 15 and when you feel like you don't fit into like society, like society was not built for you, you like, you have no other place to go.

Eva: Primary school. I used to cry in a corner when I was overwhelmed, and it was a corner because no one could come behind me. I was safe, no one could touch me. I was there, but it was a lot of almost loneliness. At secondary school I just hated the noise. It was always really loud and so I liked to sit outside, even if it was raining, because it's not noisy outside.

Ruby: When I actually got my diagnosis. I remember speaking to my mother was being like, it's crazy that that was never suggested to us. I got tested for bipolar, I got tested for all sorts of things, but they never even thought about it.

Eva: I find with a lot of people I've spoken to, they're like, oh, they said I had borderline personality disorder. They said I had bipolar. Um, and they get all these misdiagnoses because everything had been done for men. Why aren't we talking about something that half the population of the world goes through or will go through in their life?

Ruby: I think when it comes to women, there is a lot of issues when it comes to getting diagnosed because women's ADHD can manifest in such a different way. I think because women in general kind of have to put on a facade anyway. We're used to performing. That's constantly what I've been doing my whole life. When I was a child, I was always told I was bossy. So then I think I then internalised that and I was like, I can't be that because people don't like bossy women. So yeah, I definitely tried to be something I wasn't, but then that made it so that I was just struggling inside. Whereas now, like I viewed the world just completely differently after I got my diagnosis.

Eva: My diagnosis did empower me. It kind of gave me a reason, and with a reason I could go about doing the things I wanted to do. It definitely gave me freedom, and I feel like I found empowerment in the freedom.

Ruby: I'm so much healthier with my mind. I'll take up however much space I need.

 

Not So Typical

Video length - 06.03
Published date - Apr 2024
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

This clip comes from the BBC series: Pilgrimage – The Road to Rome.

Over an evening meal, Stephen tells his fellow Pilgrims that – as a gay man – he doesn’t feel accepted by any religion. Dana talks about the problems that many Roman Catholics have, being caught between compassion for their gay friends, and the Church’s definition of marriage which is only between a man and woman. Mehreen talks about her belief that it is wrong to judge others, and Brendan stresses the importance of respect and discussion, and his belief that it isn’t the religions that cause problems, it’s the people within them!

 Watch full episodes on BBC iPlayer.

Pilgrimage Moments: Discussing Homosexuality and Acceptance

Narrator: At the end of a long day, and in keeping with good pilgrim tradition, it's time to break bread together.

 

Les:         Should do the Italian way where we just chuck all the sauce into the pasta.

 

Lesley:    Yes.

 

Stephen:  Can I just ask a question, guys? Oh, guys, I thought this was a great opportunity tonight with such a diverse group to have a talk about religion. Great idea and I want to see if I can be enlightened.

 

Lesley:    Wowser.

 

Lesley:    Friends. My family.

 

Stephen:  One of my main problems seems to be this word intolerance. I don't think for me there is any organized religion or faith that embraces me.

 

Katy:       Do you mean as a gay man?

 

Stephen:  Absolutely.

 

Brendan: If I'm gay in the churches sense Catholic church, that is fundamentally wrong. Now, I know so many gay people. My brother is gay. If that is the case, if that is the Catholic Church belief, then surely my brother is screwed. Stephen is screwed because of one belief of of of the faith. How do you feel about that?

 

Dana:      I, I also have many friends who are gay that I love very much. Compassionate because I think the gay community suffered greatly. Even among the gay community, there are different ideas, there are different thoughts. I have friends who are gay, who are married because they want to be married. I have friends who are gay who feel that the term marriage or the sacrament of marriage shouldn't be shifted from where it has been between a man and a woman. It's also very difficult if, say, a Catholic, if you believe that a gay person should be given every respect and every protection under the law, but that marriage should be as it has always been, between a man and a woman. And yet, if you say that you're suddenly identified as being homophobic, which is not right either, and even within our church, it's a very contentious issue at this time.

 

Stephen:  The way you said that so eloquently, if that was the message given out by the church, then people would understand. But if people's kneejerk responses, a marriage between a man and a woman end of, then you're going to upset a lot of people.

 

Dana:      Yeah. And that's why it's so hard for me to speak on behalf of a church which is already in tumult, you know, trying to sort this question out.

 

Mehreen: You've been talking about homosexuality, and I don't have enough of an in-depth knowledge about it to make any certain statements. I can't say all Muslims are going to say, yeah, it's cool to be gay at all. I know that I've got friends who are Muslim and gay, and I know that they will probably explain a lot better than me of the reasons why they don't think the two are mutually exclusive. What I can say is that for someone to tell you, you're going to hell. That is a bigger sin than homosexuality. That is the biggest sin. Right.

 

Stephen:  And that is why this has been a wonderful experience thus far. Because whatever faith or religion you have or you practice, if you don't allow me to ask questions. Yes. And be inquisitive about it. Yeah. And then you reasonably respond to me with something as opposed to rejecting me. We ain't going to get on. Yeah.

 

Brendan: Uh, I hate to get all lovey dovey and everything, but we're a group of really different faiths and backgrounds. Yet we've all been able to to spend a week in each other's company and have incredible conversations, complete respect for the most part of our different faiths and things. And if you said to me at the start of this week, uh, there's going to be I feel like there's a joke, a muslim, a Jew and a and I've actually learned a lot. And what I've recognized is that it's not the religion that's that's the problem. It's the people within it that create the problems. Because actually the whole party, how can we all get on so, so well with our different backgrounds? Because we're hopefully, for the most part, really genuinely decent people. It's not the religions that define us, it's the people within the religions that create the problems.

 

Pilgrimage Moments: Discussing Homosexuality and Acceptance

Video length - 04.47
Published date - Mar 2024
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

This clip comes from the BBC series: Pilgrimage – The Road to Rome.

The Pilgrims have reached the end of the Via Francigena, an ancient pilgrimage route which finishes in Rome. Thousands of people have gathered in St. Peter’s Square to catch a glimpse of Pope Francis, but the Pilgrims have been granted a private audience with him, and the chance to ask the spiritual leader of more than a billion Catholics a question. Stephen takes the opportunity to explain that he’d come on the Pilgrimage looking for answers and faith, but that – as a gay man – he’d never felt accepted by religion, and still doesn’t. Then the Pope responds in a way that no one expected…

 Watch full episodes on BBC iPlayer.

Pilgrimage Moments: A gay man talks to the Pope

Narrator:   It's early Wednesday morning in Saint Peter's Square. The day of the week when thousands gather to listen to the Pope.

 

Mehreen:  It is packed with people. This is like a concert of a top celebrity, but magnified when you see this many people all to meet this man, you realise the significance of what we're about to do. We're about to go and meet this man. This is obviously a massive, massive deal.

 

Narrator:   Elected six years ago, Pope Francis is known for his humility and humour. The spiritual leader of more than a billion Catholics, he's gained a reputation for bringing change to the church and for his attempts to make the institution more tolerant and inclusive.

 

Lesley:      At the end of this two weeks of extraordinary pilgrimage, I'm going to be with the big man himself.

 

Dana:        I'm actually quite amazed that there's been space made to meet this privately. I think we're all kind of taken aback at that. So of course it is an honor.

 

Les:           It is just my average normal day. Meeting the Pope as you do.

 

Narrator:   It's very interesting that we've just done the veer and he's very much a believer in the veer. So it's it's nice to have it sort of I suppose we are. We're being blessed because we've been on the veer. I don't know.

 

Les:           I am feeling hugely apprehensive about this meeting. I know millions of Catholics around the world would give their right hand to be in this position, so I don't want to blow it. So I've got to be respectful, listen to other people's views and express my own opinions. Otherwise I'll not be true to myself.

 

Narrator:   While the vast crowd gathers and waits in Saint Peter's Square, the pilgrims file inside for their private audience with Pope Francis.

 

Stephen:    Steven K Amos.

 

Lesley:      I'm an actress. I'm 72.

 

Translator: You don't seem to be 72.

 

Lesley:      I know I don't do, I.

 

Dana:        At this difficult time for our church. We we long for truth. And we know what is very difficult. And pray for you each day.

 

Stephen:    Your holiness. I'm Les Dennis. My mother would be thrilled to know I had held your hand.

 

Narrator:   Incredibly, Stephen gets a chance to ask a question to the man who matters most.

 

Stephen:    I lost my mother three months ago. I buried my twin sister, who were both very religious. So me coming on this pilgrimage, being non-religious. I was looking for answers and faith. But as a gay man, I don't feel accepted.

 

Stephen:    Thank you. It was amazingly powerful, I think, for all of us. He gave us so much time. He didn't dodge anything. That's what I found was extraordinary.

 

Mehreen:  That was an absolutely fantastic experience. I think no one expected it to be quite as emotional.

 

Stephen:    I didn't know what I was going to say then.

 

Mehreen:  My mother would have loved to shake your hand and that was that was lovely because she would've.

 

Katy:         It didn't really feel like, oh, this is the Pope. He felt like he felt like a real person.

 

Stephen:    You bless the Pope, Brendan blessed the Pope.

 

Lesley:      I feel like we missed a trick there. We actually said bless you to the Pope.

 

Narrator:   He had a lovely warmth about him, a lovely energy about him.

 

Mehreen:  And he just said that.

 

Translator: Yeah, he's the Pope. He'd have to, otherwise.

 

Narrator:   He wouldn't be in this position. He's got to have something special about him.

 

Greg:        It felt like a pressure cooker of emotion. And then when Steven asked his question, I just felt myself going to bits.

 

Les:           He used an amazing phrase. He said, adjectives that are used to describe people are meaningless because every human has his own dignity. And that is when I lost it. And to be frank, his candid and honest response blew my mind. That's what I've been searching for for a long time. Um.

 

Stephen:    Yeah.

 

Pilgrimage Moments: A Gay Man Talks to the Pope

Video length - 07.32
Published date - Mar 2024
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

It’s party season and spiking is on the rise in the UK. In our BFI documentary residential film a student shares her alarming party experience where she was spiked herself. Also hear the positive aspects of why teenagers want to party and advice on what you can do to keep yourself safe when you go out.

If you have been affected by this film and need some more help or information please reach out to:

Stamp Out Spiking UK – stampoutspiking.org

Victim Support UK – victimsupport.org.uk

Spiked

Narrator:    Do you ever feel unsafe when you're out?

 

Actor 1:     Um, yeah I do sometimes feel unsafe when I go out quite a lot. Um, I think the main cause of it would be men, probably, um, just general people that I don't know.

 

Narrator:    Do you know anyone who's been spiked?

 

Narrator:    Yes yes yes yes yes. No.

 

Narrator:    Ah, yes. One of my best friends.

 

Isis:            I was with one of my friends. It was freshers week. Everyone was out and we were just going for a good night. I remember being in the club and I was dancing. And then I remember feeling a tingling sensation going up my legs. And then I remember collapsing on the floor. Once I was outside the club, it started to really hit me. The only thing I remember from the car journey is me. Just keep saying I'm not usually like this. I've been spiked. I need to go to hospital. The driver escorted me back to my house. I just remember passing out in the bathroom while we were waiting for the ambulance. I stopped breathing and my dad had to give me CPR. I woke up the next morning in hospital attached to an IV and wires. The hospital staff suspected I'd been injected with GHB, the date rape drug.

 

News Reporter:          She woke up the next morning unable to remember the night before.

 

News Reporter 2:       A blood test revealed someone had spiked her drink with ketamine.

 

News Reporter 3:       It can come in a drink or through a needle, as a new report on spiking says, too little is known about how widespread it is.

 

Narrator:    Does Stamp Out Spiking get contacted by many spiking victims?

Dawn:        We get contacted continually, and this is the reason why I've got so much determination to try to make spiking a separate criminal offence or so the law that needs to be updated is because of all the men and women that have broken down in my arms over the years and said, oh my God, you believe me, everyone else has accused me of having too much to drink.

 

Isis:            One of the nurses at the hospital didn't believe me, and she was questioning me about how much I've drunk and what I've taken. And the bouncers kept insisting that I didn't get spiked, and it was really frustrating and I couldn't get my point across to them.

 

Dawn:        It's like an invisible crime. That's what I call spiking. It leaves the victim with no memory whatsoever. They'll they'll become compliant. They'll leave with the assailant. They won't be able to put up a fight. That's why it's a cowardly crime. You're not even giving someone a chance. You're going in and you're poisoning them. And it's just disgusting.

 

Isis:            The main thing I was thinking about was if I got left alone, or if I didn't get home safe, or if I went to the toilet alone, or went outside, or if I wasn't with any of my friends, what would have happened to me?

 

Actor 1:     What do you think the motivation is behind spiking?

 

Dawn:        There's there's a few different ones. Some people just do it as a prank. Um, we believe some people are doing it for jealousy. There is obviously sexual assault and rape, and we're now getting reports of quite a few male victims for robbery. So there's a multitude of reasons why people do this crime. But ultimately it's got to come down to power and misuse of power.

 

Isis:            It really affected my dad. He didn't sleep for days after that, and he always came to check on me when I was sleeping.

 

Isis's Dad:  We honestly thought that she was going to die there and then on the floor. We were so worried about them to go out again. But the thing is, she hadn't done anything wrong. It obviously happened to multiple people in the club at the time because whilst we were in the hospital, there was also another girl from the same club, from the same college that she had had gone to.

 

Narrator:    73% of spiking victims are aged 18 to 21. Almost 5000 reports of needle and drink spiking are made to the UK police in a year, but it is estimated that around 97% of spiking incidents go unreported.

 

Isis:            We didn't report to the police because it would have been so hard to even detect who it could have been, because when you're in a club, you're surrounded by so many people, surrounded by so many people, surrounded by so many people.

 

Dawn:        We need people to to step up and to share their experiences so that we can help to eliminate this crime. We need to all work collaboratively to make change.

 

Isis:            My experience hasn't stopped me from going out, and I don't think it should have. Just because there are bad people out there, it doesn't mean I can't have a good time with my friends.

 

Actor 2:     I think it's important to go out with your friends just so that you, you know, have a good time with them. Make memories. And because we couldn't do that for so long. And yeah, I was just making up for it. And I guess.

 

Kodi:         It helps to build your social skills and make you a better person in a sense.

 

Actor 1:     You'll look back at things that you're absolutely mortified by, and you'll be able to laugh about them one day. Remember, like making those memories. And you want to make those memories with your close friends.

 

Isis:            You are only young once. The most important thing when you're going out is just look out for each other.

Spiked

Video length - 06.06
Published date - Dec 2023
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

The climate crisis is having a deep impact on the world around us, how we live our lives and how we feel. With a global increase in web searches of the term ‘climate anxiety’ (up by 4,590% from 2018-2023) this film is a timely exploration of the emotional effect of climate change through one individual’s remarkable true story. 

Joycelyn Longdon (Climate in Colour) takes us on her journey across the intersection between social action and climate activism, shedding light on the urgent need for change and deepening our understanding of the intricate relationship between the environment and our well-being. She answers the question, ‘what is ‘climate anxiety?’ And can we cure it?”

Check out our other Climate Change films from the series:

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-buddhism

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-multi-faith-views

Climate Anxiety

Joycelyn: I've always been interested in nature and the environment. Like any Brit, I grew up watching nature programmes on TV. However, I lived in London where I didn't have much access to nature, but there was a local meadowland where I used to go running.

I remember going on a trip when I was younger to Northern Ireland. We visited an ancient wood and it was there that for the first time I felt a deep connection to nature, so when my friend invited me on a march for nature, it seemed like the right thing to do.

At the climate march, maybe I was a little naive, but I didn't realise the extent of climate change.

 

I felt overwhelmed by the information on the signs and banners. The people there were not like me, and it was a shaming experience where a lot was expected of me and I left it feeling isolated and I didn't belong.

I felt lost. I wanted to do something, but I didn't know how I could get involved. How do I break into the space? If this is who climate activists are, if this is what I meant to be like, then I don't fit in.

Often when we are presented with a threat, it triggers one of three responses fight, flight or freeze. Many people feel so overwhelmed by the threat of climate change, they freeze up and become apathetic or immobilised. Many want to run away from the problem. To ignore it. To dismiss it. To tell themselves it's not real or won't be that bad, or that some invention will save us, but I have always been someone who, if they see an injustice or something wrong in the world, I am motivated to fix it.

 

But what am I meant to do as an individual? How do I get involved? I felt like an outsider. Okay, so I'll change what I can. Food. Clothing. Travel. But others were not doing the same, and this felt stressful and frustrating and my climate anxiety was still there.

My thoughts were telling me I could always do more. I always do. Could always do more. I could always do more. The overwhelming feeling, the racing thoughts, the tight chest, the constant questioning and blaming myself and if I was doing enough was making me depressed.

The climate crisis is a huge topic. It is affected by and affects so many different aspects of the world, from environmental to social to economic to political. It's clear that seemingly small changes can have a huge impact on someone somewhere in the world.

For every tree felled, every half a degree of temperature rise, there will be worse hurricanes, wildfires or floods, which may devastate someone's home, because climate change is such a broad issue. I worry I'm not using my skills in the right area.

At its very worst, this causes me to feel overwhelmed and like I want to disappear. I knew from past experience that exercise is a great way to combat these feelings. Exercise releases chemicals and hormones into the brain that affect how you feel, which can help us to feel less stressed and more clear headed.

Another thing I found helpful was the switch off to stop thinking about it, to take a break and to escape either through a good book or film, or by going for a walk, especially in nature.

 

Nature has been proven to have an incredibly calming effect when I go for a walk in nature, whether that's in a park or a local word. I don't listen to music. I try to notice the world around me the birds, the sounds, the plants, the trees, and try to stay present with it and realise I am a part of nature, but my climate anxiety was still there.

Talking about concerns and worries was also very important, but it took me a while to realise the best way to do this. I would talk to my friends about the climate crisis, but we would easily fall into a spiral of oh, isn't this bad? Or did you hear about this negative climate news story? And sometimes talking about it can feel like action, but it isn't.

 

It is important to share those feelings and to get them off your chest. But now what I found is that if we talk about it in terms of ideas or solutions, by sharing groups or campaigns which are tackling these issues, then together we can turn those feelings into action, but my climate anxiety was still there.

This was because I didn't realise that climate anxiety is also a result of a failure of the systems of power, from government to big business that impact us all.

At the same time, I'd become aware of racial justice issues around the world and thought, what can I do? How can I help people of different races being treated unfairly throughout the world? I set up a group of creatives called Black and Black and I wrote articles, I designed leaflets, and I organised events. The more I learnt, the more I realised that racial justice and climate justice are linked.

 

People in other countries who had contributed the least to cause climate change, suffering the worst effects of it. I found this deeply unfair. I found a way in to the climate movement. And my voice and my identity not only belonged, but a useful. The skills I developed through racial justice campaigning are the same ones needed in the campaign for climate justice.

 

We put so much emphasis on looking to one person, one hero to save us, whether that's Greta Thunberg or whoever. But some people believe that if they're not doing as much, they have no right to be involved.

But no one action will change the world, and no one person is so important that without or with them, they would bring an end to climate change. It will take all of us. Each of us doing what we can together.

They say that action is the antidote to anxiety, and it's not just a phrase. So I set up an Instagram account called Climate and Colour. I never expected it to grow in the way it has, which made me realise I was not alone.

 

I used to worry that I didn't have a purpose or have the ability to make a difference. So I did something about it. I decided to do a PhD to become a doctor in Conservation technology, looking at how tech can monitor changes in forests and improve the variety of animals within them, with the hope that if I can work with local communities to help protect wildlife, I'll be making a difference.

I know that my climate anxiety is not cured. It will not go away permanently, but I now know that it's a perfectly normal response to climate change. Not only is it normal, but I'm proud of it because it shows I care.

 

I now use my climate anxiety as a tool. I do not let it depress me or overwhelm me, but to empower me and motivate me. It motivates me on my journey, a journey that has taken me to some amazing places and to meet some inspirational people.

I have been privileged enough to speak on panels, and to decision makers and world leaders about the climate and biodiversity crisis, but I now know that no single individual can do it all, and it's important not to think that as an individual, all of the responsibility lands on my shoulders, because no one can be a perfect activist, and it's important to be tolerant and to recognise and respect others.

Everyone is on their own journey and their own path, and what works for you might not work for others. So I try to live my life and lead by example.

 

When I started my journey on that March all those years ago, I felt like I didn't belong. I felt shamed and made to feel guilty that I wasn't doing enough. But now those marches are much more diverse, and there are so many different groups representing so many different aspects of the climate crisis. But you don't just have to attend climate protest to be actively doing something for the climate.

You can help researchers by surveying the bird or insect species in your garden. You can find out about tree planting organisations and volunteer days near you. Whatever your passions and interests, there will be a space for you in the climate movement.

So just think what you could do. But remember that you're not on your own. We won't solve the climate crisis with individual action alone. You can be part of a wider movement of people pushing for the change we need, and be proud of your climate anxiety and let it lead you to action.

 

Joycelyn: I've always been interested in nature and the environment. Like any Brit, I grew up watching nature programmes on TV. However, I lived in London where I didn't have much access to nature, but there was a local meadowland where I used to go running.

I remember going on a trip when I was younger to Northern Ireland. We visited an ancient wood and it was there that for the first time I felt a deep connection to nature, so when my friend invited me on a march for nature, it seemed like the right thing to do.

At the climate march, maybe I was a little naive, but I didn't realise the extent of climate change.

 

I felt overwhelmed by the information on the signs and banners. The people there were not like me, and it was a shaming experience where a lot was expected of me and I left it feeling isolated and I didn't belong.

I felt lost. I wanted to do something, but I didn't know how I could get involved. How do I break into the space? If this is who climate activists are, if this is what I meant to be like, then I don't fit in.

Often when we are presented with a threat, it triggers one of three responses fight, flight or freeze. Many people feel so overwhelmed by the threat of climate change, they freeze up and become apathetic or immobilised. Many want to run away from the problem. To ignore it. To dismiss it. To tell themselves it's not real or won't be that bad, or that some invention will save us, but I have always been someone who, if they see an injustice or something wrong in the world, I am motivated to fix it.

 

But what am I meant to do as an individual? How do I get involved? I felt like an outsider. Okay, so I'll change what I can. Food. Clothing. Travel. But others were not doing the same, and this felt stressful and frustrating and my climate anxiety was still there.

My thoughts were telling me I could always do more. I always do. Could always do more. I could always do more. The overwhelming feeling, the racing thoughts, the tight chest, the constant questioning and blaming myself and if I was doing enough was making me depressed.

The climate crisis is a huge topic. It is affected by and affects so many different aspects of the world, from environmental to social to economic to political. It's clear that seemingly small changes can have a huge impact on someone somewhere in the world.

For every tree felled, every half a degree of temperature rise, there will be worse hurricanes, wildfires or floods, which may devastate someone's home, because climate change is such a broad issue. I worry I'm not using my skills in the right area.

At its very worst, this causes me to feel overwhelmed and like I want to disappear. I knew from past experience that exercise is a great way to combat these feelings. Exercise releases chemicals and hormones into the brain that affect how you feel, which can help us to feel less stressed and more clear headed.

Another thing I found helpful was the switch off to stop thinking about it, to take a break and to escape either through a good book or film, or by going for a walk, especially in nature.

 

Nature has been proven to have an incredibly calming effect when I go for a walk in nature, whether that's in a park or a local word. I don't listen to music. I try to notice the world around me the birds, the sounds, the plants, the trees, and try to stay present with it and realise I am a part of nature, but my climate anxiety was still there.

Talking about concerns and worries was also very important, but it took me a while to realise the best way to do this. I would talk to my friends about the climate crisis, but we would easily fall into a spiral of oh, isn't this bad? Or did you hear about this negative climate news story? And sometimes talking about it can feel like action, but it isn't.

 

It is important to share those feelings and to get them off your chest. But now what I found is that if we talk about it in terms of ideas or solutions, by sharing groups or campaigns which are tackling these issues, then together we can turn those feelings into action, but my climate anxiety was still there.

This was because I didn't realise that climate anxiety is also a result of a failure of the systems of power, from government to big business that impact us all.

At the same time, I'd become aware of racial justice issues around the world and thought, what can I do? How can I help people of different races being treated unfairly throughout the world? I set up a group of creatives called Black and Black and I wrote articles, I designed leaflets, and I organised events. The more I learnt, the more I realised that racial justice and climate justice are linked.

 

People in other countries who had contributed the least to cause climate change, suffering the worst effects of it. I found this deeply unfair. I found a way in to the climate movement. And my voice and my identity not only belonged, but a useful. The skills I developed through racial justice campaigning are the same ones needed in the campaign for climate justice.

 

We put so much emphasis on looking to one person, one hero to save us, whether that's Greta Thunberg or whoever. But some people believe that if they're not doing as much, they have no right to be involved.

But no one action will change the world, and no one person is so important that without or with them, they would bring an end to climate change. It will take all of us. Each of us doing what we can together.

They say that action is the antidote to anxiety, and it's not just a phrase. So I set up an Instagram account called Climate and Colour. I never expected it to grow in the way it has, which made me realise I was not alone.

 

I used to worry that I didn't have a purpose or have the ability to make a difference. So I did something about it. I decided to do a PhD to become a doctor in Conservation technology, looking at how tech can monitor changes in forests and improve the variety of animals within them, with the hope that if I can work with local communities to help protect wildlife, I'll be making a difference.

I know that my climate anxiety is not cured. It will not go away permanently, but I now know that it's a perfectly normal response to climate change. Not only is it normal, but I'm proud of it because it shows I care.

 

I now use my climate anxiety as a tool. I do not let it depress me or overwhelm me, but to empower me and motivate me. It motivates me on my journey, a journey that has taken me to some amazing places and to meet some inspirational people.

I have been privileged enough to speak on panels, and to decision makers and world leaders about the climate and biodiversity crisis, but I now know that no single individual can do it all, and it's important not to think that as an individual, all of the responsibility lands on my shoulders, because no one can be a perfect activist, and it's important to be tolerant and to recognise and respect others.

Everyone is on their own journey and their own path, and what works for you might not work for others. So I try to live my life and lead by example.

 

When I started my journey on that March all those years ago, I felt like I didn't belong. I felt shamed and made to feel guilty that I wasn't doing enough. But now those marches are much more diverse, and there are so many different groups representing so many different aspects of the climate crisis. But you don't just have to attend climate protest to be actively doing something for the climate.

You can help researchers by surveying the bird or insect species in your garden. You can find out about tree planting organisations and volunteer days near you. Whatever your passions and interests, there will be a space for you in the climate movement.

So just think what you could do. But remember that you're not on your own. We won't solve the climate crisis with individual action alone. You can be part of a wider movement of people pushing for the change we need, and be proud of your climate anxiety and let it lead you to action.

 

Climate Anxiety

Video length - 09.15
Published date - Nov 2023
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

Step into the vibrant celebration of Bandi Chhor Divas with our latest film. This film immerses you in the rich traditions and cultural significance of this special occasion. Bandi Chhor Divas,  is a Sikh holiday that coincides with Diwali, the festival of lights. It commemorates the release of Guru Hargobind Ji, the sixth Sikh Guru, from imprisonment in the historic Gwalior Fort.

“Bandi Chhor Divas” is a captivating exploration of tradition and faith, making it a valuable resource for educators, students, and anyone interested in celebrating and understanding the beauty of cultural festivals.

Bandi Chhor Divas

Davina:        Waheguru ji ka Khalsa, Waheguru ji ki fateh.

My name is Davina Kaur.

 

Arvinda:       My name is Arvinda Singh.

Hello, my name is Harwinder Singh.

I'm here today at the Park Avenue Gurdwara in Southall.

And today is Bandi Chhor Divas.

 

Narrator:      Every autumn, Sikhs all over the world celebrate the festival of Bandi Chhor Divas,

which means “The Day of Liberation”.

They get together at the Gurdwara

the Sikh Temple

to worship, to eat, and to set off fireworks!

Bandi Chhor Divas is celebrated on the same day as the Hindu festival of Diwali,

and the two are sometimes mixed up,

but for Sikhs, the day marks a very special moment in their history…

 

Harwinder:   Today is the day of Diwali,

which is a festival celebrated by many people,

predominantly Hindus,

but also some Jains, Sikhs and some Buddhists commemorate the day.

Sikhs celebrate on this day

the Bandi Chhor Diavs,

which is the date that we call the Day of Liberation.

 

Narrator:      400 years ago, India was ruled by the Emperor Jahangir.

He was an incredibly vain man

who liked everyone to think he was a good Muslim,

but he drank wine, smoked opium,

and never made a decision without consulting his astrologers

all things that Muslims are not supposed to do.

Paintings of Jahangir stared down from every wall of his palace,

and all the courtiers had to wear a portrait of him around their necks.

If anyone else became important or popular, he got very jealous.

 

This might be why he hated Guru Arjan so much.

The Sikh leader was attracting more and more followers to the city of Amritsar,

and the rumour spread that he was building an army to overthrow the Emperor.

Jahangir took the gossip seriously

and ordered a courtier called Chandu Shah

to arrest Guru Arjan and throw him in prison.

But Chandu Shah was a very cruel man,

and took delight in slowly, horribly, torturing Guru Arjan to death.

Just before he died,

Guru Arjan announced that his son would be the next Guru,

the sixth leader of the Sikh people.

His name was Hargobind,

and he was just 11 years old.

 

Guru Hargobind decided that -

in order to survive - the Sikh people should learn how to defend themselves.

 

He used two swords to explain the new direction his leadership would take. He named the sword on his right Bidi, which means heaven, and it represented that he would continue to be the spiritual leader of the Sikh religion,

but the Sudanese left was named Mirai, which means Earth, to represent that he would also be a political leader of the Sikh community and fight for their rights. Over the next few years, the Sikhs became a formidable fighting force and Emperor Jahangir realised that he'd made a big mistake. He had Guru Gobind Singh Ji brought to the royal court to make it clear who is in charge. But by now the guru was a grown man and not easy to intimidate. So the Emperor pretended he wanted to be friends with the young guru instead.

A huge hunting party was laid on, and they set out to track down a rogue lion that had killed several people. They'd got it cornered when suddenly the lion broke cover and leapt straight for Jahangir. Guru Gobind Singh slammed his shield into the lion's head, followed up with his sword, and the lion fell dead.

General Shah was worried. Jahangir and Guru Gobind Singh Ji were really becoming friends, and the emperor might be persuaded to punish the person responsible for Guru Arjun. Their death and that meant trouble.

When Jahangir became ill, General Tendulkar saw his chance. He forced the royal astrologers to tell the emperor that the illness was due to an inauspicious alignment of the stars or something, and that the only way to be cured was to send a holy man to the fort at Gwalior to say special prayers. The holiest man Jahangir knew was Guru Hagopian Singh.

So, as Tendulkar had anticipated, the young guru was given the mission, but the Gwalior Fort turned out to be a jail where political prisoners, anyone who disagreed with Jahangir, were held captive.

There were 52 Hindu princes locked up within its walls, and on Chandu Shah's orders, Guru Gobind Singh was forced to join them. When Jahangir eventually recovered from his illness, he demanded that Guru Gobind Singh Ji should be released. But the guru refused to leave the fort unless the Hindu princes were also given their freedom. Jahangir didn't want a Sikh revolt on his hands, so he came up with a compromise. Guru Gobind Singh would be released, and as many princes who could hold onto his cloak as he passed through the narrow gateway would be allowed to leave the fort with him.

 

A large crowd waited outside for Guru Gobind Singh Ji to appear. Finally, the gate opened and there he was. But how many of the princes had managed to keep a hold of his cloak for five? Six, maybe. Following behind Guru Gobind Singh. All 52 of the princes emerged from the fort, each holding onto a tassel of an enormously long and flamboyant cloak that the guru had got specially made for the occasion.

Jahangir blamed Chandu Shah for the whole fiasco, including the death of Guru Arjun, but the Empress friendship with Guru Gobind Singh Ji never recovered. The guru was given a hero's welcome when he returned to Amritsar on the day of the Hindu festival Diwali in 1619, and every year since then, Sikhs have celebrated Bundi. Shortly was the day of liberation.

This and Diwali are two separate festivals in their own right. From the time of the sixth Guru Nanak freedom from prison onwards, six began to celebrate Bundi short lives alongside Diwali, and so the festivities differ quite starkly.

Everyone who comes to the goodwill shows their respect to God and the gurus by bowing down to the Guru Granth Sahib ji, the Sikh holy book. The very first copy of the Guru Granth Sahib ji, known as The Adherent, was put together by Guru Arjun, the father of Guru Har Gobind Singh. Then there is food, vegetarian food, which is given out for free to all visitors in a big dining hall called a Langer Hall. The people cooking and serving the food and clearing up afterwards are all giving their time for free as well. And this is called seva, which means selfless service.

 

Harwinder:   What most of us try to do is remember that the guru was a political prisoner, and how even to this day, there are political prisoners around the world who are incarcerated and their freedoms are being kept from them. So on this.

 

Davina:        Day, we come together to celebrate the occasion as well as this. For those who are interested in the history side of it, we also partake in political conversations. The whole point of the reason why we celebrate it was because Guru Gobind Singh celebrated the fact that selflessness, humility, being politically minded, thinking about living in a world, trying to make it just, and for us, it's a key element, is merely petty.

 

Davina:        The fact that we should be spiritual and also remove ourselves from the material world and illusions, but also within the world, make it better for the good of others. One reason why this celebration is really important is because regardless of whether you're a Sikh, a Hindu and Muslim, a Catholic Jain, it's the same message coincides with an all face. The fact that we should be political, we should be helping each other. We should be sharing the message, having that commonality, that unity, having peace, prosperity and fairness.

 

Narrator:      As night falls. Candles and little lamps called divas are led to celebrate Guru Singh's return home to Amritsar. And the victory of light over darkness. And later on, there are fireworks.

 

Interviewee 1: Bandi Chhor Divas is showing that light will be over darkness in all forms.

 

Interviewee 2: Both Diwali and Bandi Divas. They are both based on freedom. Well, it's usually the victory of good or evil. That's what it's all about.

 

Interviewee 3: I'm here to celebrate the Diwali and Bandi Chhor. So Diwalli is basically the festival of light. And when guru, the sixth guru, he came and came out and he took everyone with him. And it shows like you have to be free and everything. And that's why I came to the Gurdwara with my family, to celebrate and celebrate with your friends and family and prayer in the temple. It's important to us because it's our religion and like we do fireworks.

 

Davina:        We're here to pray, meditate, enlighten, but also help others and not just be. As an individual in this world, but as a community within this whole world. Why Guruji made it all and all is his and that is where we want to return to. That is where we've come from. So it's the fact that seeing that commonality between us all are reminding ourselves that we have a voice. We should use that voice. We should help others. But for justice, equality and tool that has reached, we have not yet reached our purpose.

 

Bandi Chhor Divas

Video length - 09.28
Published date - Nov 2023
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4

Roots of Carnival celebrates London’s annual carnival held in Notting Hill – a perfect resource for Black History Month. It features a host of voices from those who attend the event and those who help organise it. Made in conjunction with the BFI Documentary Residential.

Roots Of Carnival

Zephaniah : Carnival is family.

 

Khirleasha :Fun. Freedom. Cultural.

 

Sherma: It's very exciting.

Carnival is part of the roots of Notting Hill. Carnival started because black people who came from Caribbean to Ladbroke Grove, and that is why Carnival happened in Notting Hill and not anywhere else. It goes all around Notting Hill, comes right back around in a circle, goes through Queensway, Bayswater and up to Kensal Rise.

 

Leslie: Where Carnival celebrates the freedom of the enslaved people - The African people remember the old African traditions and mixed with the French traditional costumery, or characters in the carnival, they express themselves, and after today, it's an expression of freedom.

 

Sherma: Merle Major is a woman that started Carnival in Ladbroke Grove, and she's also a political activist in the community.

 

Khirleasha : For Caribbean people, the police were very rough with us and the area was very rough in itself, rough in terms of housing. So the black people did not get any decent housing, although they were invited to come here to fill the labour market gap that was left after the war.

The reason it's important to tell Merle Major's story is because Merle Major had a duty of care to the community where young people really trusted her and they felt safe in her company.

She's like a leading figure within the Ladbroke Grove community. She was well respected in the black community.

 

Sherma: She wanted to give them that safe place that they could come to and tell her their problems, and she would help them with housing.

For anything that was difficult for them, she was there to help them. So when we had Carnival, Carnival was to help people to make something, be creative, do this, do that, everybody get involved. People started to hear about Carnival. Bigger, more bigger stars started to come over, you know, big bands, and it just got bigger and bigger. And, you know, nobody really wanted to go home. Nobody thought that even Carnival was going to turn out like this.

 

Khirleasha : Carnival is everything. We live for Carnival all year round. Even right now we're doing a countdown. We're like, "what are we gonna wear for Carnival?" It just means everything. It's like it just brings so much happiness.

 

Sherma: You wake up and you get this, you hear this music and you think, 'I'm sleeping', and then, "'what is that noise?" And then all of a sudden - you think, "it's Carnival!"

 

Zephaniah: It's just a big mood. That's all I can call it. Like, it's vibes. It's euphoric and you'll be family.

 

Sherma: It's made a lot of money. It's brought people together. The whole community comes out now. They sell their food and anything. Their culture is all involved. It's a really beautiful thing.

 

Khirleasha: To someone who had never been to Carnival before, I would say it's like a big party in the street.

 

Vaugnie: It's gonna be your best time. You're going to have the time for your life.

 

Khirleasha: It's like a big festival in the street.

My favourite thing about Notting Hill Carnival is just how different London looks when it's happening.

 

Corey: I'd say my favourite part about Carnival is the music and definitely the food.

 

Khirleasha: The way that, all of the streets get boarded up. The fact that the road just looks completely different because there's no cars, people are just walking in the road. It just feels so free.

 

Zephaniah: I've been to Carnival in London. I've been to Carnivals in Berlin, Germany, and also Trinidad.

 

Vaugnie: The Carnival is longer in Trinidad. And here (London) it's just two days.

 

Corey: I'm out with a with a friend from near where I live, but by the time I got there, you know, like you get five minutes in and you've lost them already.

 

Khirleasha: I fell asleep. I got so tired from the walk in with our mass band that we had like a bus. You know, sometimes there's like floats and buses. So we had a bus going behind us, and my parents just put me in the bus and I just fell asleep, and then I woke up and I couldn't see my parents and they were outside still walking, but I was like freaking out because I was like, "where's my mum, where's my dad?"

 

Zephaniah: The moment you turn left and turn your head, your best friend, your sister, your cousin, they are gone.

 

Khirleasha: It was funny because it's just like - the other thing I love about Carnival is it's just full of aunties and uncles. I feel like there's always people there that just want to look out for you.

Jubilee is festival of colour.

 

You need to make sure you cover your hair because everyone's throwing paint, powder, baby powder, flour. I love Panorama. I love to hear the Steelpans. I can sit there and just listen to it all day. There's all these different groups and they all battle it out. I just love it. I think it sounds so sweet. Like a pan beating. It's amazing. I love it.

 

Sherma: Caribbeans were like Trinidadians, so Trinidadians were into Calypso. I mean, we all know Jamaicans like reggae, but they also are involved in the carnival now as well. They have Soca. It spreads everywhere now.

For us, it's the masquerade and it's going with the floats, it is the dressing up, it's going in costume and parading for the day, you know what I mean? Like, that's unity.

 

Zephaniah: I want it to just remain wholesome and be what it is. You know what I mean? I want the message to always be there and just never leave. So it's carried on through my children's children's children's children, you know? I mean, everyone can have fun. You know what I mean? But go and experience the culture and see what it's actually about and you will have a better understanding of what Carnival is and what it stands for.

 

Khirleasha: That's it.

 

Zephaniah: Come on, man.

 

Sherma: Thank you. Thank you.

 

Roots of Carnival

Video length - 06.00
Published date - Oct 2023
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources

Climate change is a global pressing issue. It affects everyone, irrespective of their religious beliefs. In this film, viewpoints on the climate crisis are explored and we hear about how different faith communities are coming together and focusing on what binds them together to help combat some of the problems the world is facing. The film features representatives from Faith for the Climate, Islamic Relief and Christian Aid.

Check out our other Climate Change films from the series:

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-anxiety

https://www.truetube.co.uk/resource/climate-change-buddhism

Climate Change: Multi-Faith Views

 

Shanon:  Today we have set up an interfaith stall in lower marsh in London in front of the offices of Islamic Relief UK and Christian Aid, who are both members of Faith for the Climate. They are part of the network with the support of our other members as well, from Buddhist, Hindu and Sikh and other Christian backgrounds and Muslim backgrounds. And we're trying to get people to understand that rich governments and big polluters in the world need to do more to support the communities in the worlds that are suffering from the worst impacts of climate change, especially since they've done the least to cause it. So this campaign is called Make Polluters Pay, and it's about paying up for the loss and damage that's suffered in these other communities in the world. And so often in the news headlines, we see how faith can become a divisive force in the world. But what we know is a network that's doing work on the climate emergency is that there are people of every single faith who want to come together for purposes like this to save the planet for environmental justice. And they come based on different teachings in their faith traditions. So the Buddhists in our network talk about their belief in the interconnectedness of all life. The Hindu based traditions talk about non-violence. The Muslims will talk about the need to respect balance or misran in creation or the trusteeship of God's creation. The Christians will talk about good stewardship. The Jews will talk about tikkun olam or the need to repair the world. And lots of pagans in our network will basically worship nature. When everyone comes together and shares these different teachings, they realize that even though we come from quite different backgrounds, we do have a common purpose. I actually used to work with an oil and gas company in Malaysia, and this is how I saw firsthand how the fossil fuel industry causes environmental damage and then tries to wash its hands off it. There is a concept in Islam that's really important for me personally, which is torba repentance, and there's always hope if you repent. So actually doing climate justice and human rights work, for me, it's now a kind of repentance from having been part of the fossil fuel industry. There is a tradition about the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him in Islam, and it's when a companion of his comes to him a little bit distress and asks him, Please help me to think about sin and righteousness. I want to know the difference. And the prophet jabs him in the heart three times and says, Ask yourself, ask your heart three times. The prophet says that he explains, Sin is that which disturbs your heart. Even though other people say something might be lawful and righteousness is you acting on that, even though other people tell you you don't need to act on it. And this is known as the fatwa or the ruling of the heart. And that is something I hold very close to me. If my heart tells me something is wrong, I know that the prophet says I should listen to it. How could you possibly love God if you don't love your fellow human beings? It's as simple as that. And what does love mean? Love means helping people when they need your help. In the Abrahamic faiths, it's about caring for the stranger, the visitor, the poor person, the orphan, the person in need. That's love. How can you love God if you don't do that? And if we think about what the climate crisis does, it actually makes people lose their homes, lose their jobs, lose their families, lose their health. If you think about how they have to deal with extreme heat and drought and floods and the illness that comes with that, if they're facing that, how could we possibly love God if we don't love them and help them? So one quote that I've come across in my line of work really inspires me. It's from Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, who was an American rabbi who actually supported the civil rights movement there. He marched alongside Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. So this was in itself is a beautiful example of interfaith friendship. But what Rabbi Heschel said and he was talking in the context of racism and the Holocaust was few are guilty, but all are responsible. And I think that is the way we need to think of what we can do in the climate crisis as well. We all have a role to play. If you know that you are in a position where you have more power and privilege, how can you use more of that power and more of that privilege for climate justice, especially to help people who have less power and less privilege and are suffering more from the climate crisis than you are? So this is why whatever we do, whatever choices we make, won't just affect people on the other side of the world. In the global South, we will be affected to all of us together. If not today, then at some point in the very near future. And this is why it's important for all of us to take action together.

 

Alaa:       As a muslim or those who follow the Muslim faith. We strongly believe in environmentalism. We believe that it's rooted in our tradition. It's rooted in scripture. We looked at the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him as a guiding source for for us in terms of emulating his characters and his attitude to things. And he really valued the environment. And so it's very important for us as Muslims to act on that. We believe that God places on his earth as stewards to look after his green planet. And so that is what inspires me in this role. As I work for Islamic Relief, it inspires me as a muslim and as a worker to do more in this space, because I believe that is something that it serves my religion but also the greater good for the planet.

 

Lydia:     So I think it's important as a Christian to look after the planet because God gave it to us as part of a creation and gave us a role to be a steward over this. It's part about also about showing love to each other and to all elements of nature. And that's part of our faith. We are called Jesus showed us that example to show love to everyone, every neighbor, every individual, everything in the world, every living creature. I think it's everyone's responsibility to look after the planet. And we each can do it in our own individual lives and our own actions. But also it's really important to recognize that governments and companies which have larger power have a larger responsibility. They're global and international. They're big organizations with lots of power, and they can change the structures of our whole world.

 

Alaa:       I think working with other faiths is a fantastic way of bringing people together in a neutral space. For many people, we come from all walks of life. We may believe different things. We might we may feel, you know, follow different deities. But actually, at the heart of it, we believe in some very fundamental principles. It's wonderful to be here today on the sunny, really bright day, working with colleagues across faiths to come together around a combined message. It's great to feel that we're doing something to combat the climate crisis in our own way, as well as just come together around positive action.

 

 

Shanon:  And I wake up in the morning and I come across news about some climate disaster in the world or another, you know, the damage that private jets are causing or the Arctic sea ice melting or wildfires somewhere and people dying. I get really hopeless and terrified and helpless. But when I come out and do things like this and I realize that there are people around me, even people of different faith traditions, but we connect so well because we are so passionate about this issue. I feel inspired and I feel energized. I feel like it's going to be a challenge, but we can do this if we do this together. If you are anxious about climate change, talk about it. There is actually value in making your feelings known and talking to people who feel the same way that you do and finding support with them. And then you realize that it doesn't stop there. You can do things together. You can talk about this with more people and then you can start talking to anyone your local MP, local councillors, local faith leaders, schools, businesses. There are so many charities like Friends of the Earth or Christian Aid or Cafod that have local chapters as well that you could get involved in. And then we realise that when we get together we can do things from very small local actions to the really big stuff that's about changing the system at large and we can do it together.

 

Climate Change: Multi-Faith Views

Video length - 08.13
Published date - Sep 2023
Keystage(s) - 3 and 4
Downloadable resources