Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is pleased to offer a youth-led climate advocacy program for highly motivated high school and college-age youth who are passionate about climate change and environmental justice. Youth on the committee develop and implement environment-related projects of their choice within the Pittsburgh community. Committee members also meet and work with other passionate youth, build leadership and project planning skills, learn about environmental and climate justice, and delve deeper into their favorite environmental topics. The program also offers opportunities to learn from experts in the diverse fields of sustainability, environmental and climate sciences.
Youth Climate Advisory Committee ǀ September – May
The Youth Climate Advisory Committee is comprised of two leaders and 15 – 20 youth advisors. The committee meets on Monday evenings during the school year from September to May and ends with a final showcase of community projects in late May or early June. Committee members commit to the full program duration, including meetings and tasks averaging 2 – 3 hours per week. Committee members are compensated with quarterly stipends.
Current Committee Projects
The 2021-2022 Committee developed projects on environmental education, food systems and sustainable fashion. The environmental education project focuses on bringing knowledge about environmental issues to middle school students, highlighting the importance of being informed from a young age. The food systems project looks at how we can make a positive climate impact with our diets while also eating delicious and budget-friendly meals. The sustainable fashion project aims to bring attention to the immense impact that fast fashion has on climate change and promote stylish looks that are better for the planet.
All of these projects will be displayed at the Youth Sustainability Showcase on Tues., May 31 from 6 – 8 p.m. in the Outdoor Garden. This is a free event and registration is required. There will be snacks and appetizers chosen by the committee, environmental educational materials available for teachers and students, pot-a-plant and other activities for families, and the sustainable fashion show as the grand finale! If you are interested in joining the Youth Climate Advisory Committee, please attend our event to learn more and meet some of the current committee members.
Youth Sustainable Fashion Show
We are seeking designers (age 12–24) to participate in our fashion show! During the Youth Sustainability Showcase, we are hosting a Sustainable Fashion Show featuring upcycled and sustainably created outfits designed by youth in the Pittsburgh area. If you are interested, you can attend a workshop on Tues, May 24th at 6pm to work on your garments and brainstorm with other designers. All designs should be sustainably made using upcycled clothing, repurposed fabric, or other unconventional materials such as bottle caps, grocery bags, newspaper, etc.
How to Apply for the Committee
Applications for the 2022–2023 committee will be accepted starting in August.
We are looking for a diverse group with a wide range of skills and interests, especially in the areas of the arts, science, technology, sustainability, education, and community outreach. All applicants must be at least 16 years of age by the application deadline to apply. Youth do not have to be currently enrolled in school to apply.