Do you recognize the name Greta Thunberg? Her face? Her voice? Her piercing eyes? Someone you have followed? Ignored? Mocked?
The documentary, I am Greta, covers a year in the life of the Swedish 15-year-old climate change activist and is worth watching.
Thunberg’s love of animals and a growing anxiety about the environmental crisis moved her to action. She began by making choice changes with her own family. “I must do what I can,” declared Thunberg as she quietly began sitting on a sidewalk outside the Swedish parliament buildings every Friday in 2018. This Friday school strike gained traction becoming the Fridays for Future or the Climate School Strike movement. Friday strikes took place every Friday somewhere in the world culminating in a multi-city rally that involved over one million students.
As Thunberg’s message widened, she was invited to speak at policy summits in her own country and continent. In 2019, Thunberg, when she was invited to address the 2019 United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York City, made the choice to sail across the Atlantic to minimize her carbon footprint. “How dare you?” were her enduring words as she scolded world leaders, challenging them to take a stand and implement necessary changes for their children and grandchildren’s future.
The documentary is as unadorned as Greta Thunberg herself. There is an urgency in her teen voice set against the background of an often indifferent and even rude adult audience.
This is a recommended viewing for families as well as middle and high school students in classroom settings. There is much to talk about, from one person’s commitment to the impact of a global movement. (Hulu)
About the Author
Jenny deGroot is a freelance media review and news writer for The Banner. She lives on Swallowfield Farm near Fort Langley B.C. with her husband, Dennis. Before retirement she worked as a teacher librarian and assistant principal.