The National Movement of Catholic Students (NMCS) Zimbabwe has recently launched a campaign on sustainable lifestyles aimed at popularising ideas developed in Pope Francis’ Laudato Si and encouraging young people to be actively involved in them.
The National Movement of Catholic Students Zimbabwe, a member of the International Movement of Catholic Students, launched the campaign, which is part of an at a mega youth clean up campaigned organised in partnership with Team up- to clean up Mbare group.
The clean-up and awareness campaign was conducted in various Mbare communities – Harare’s oldest suburb – in a bid to reduce the rate of littering and advocate for environmental care.
Above fifty members of the movement teamed up with several youths who also made their commitment to adopt sustainable lifestyles.
The Sustainable lifestyles include commitments to eat less meat and fewer animal food products, cutting down amount of energy use and sharing which encourage people to use less individually and more collectively.
It further urges people create a plastic free zone, no wastage of food, buy local food, making public transport a priority, getting on bicycles.
The campaign also encourages people to prepare their own meals, phase out fossil fuel use and to act now.
During the clean-up campaign, groups managed to pick up litter from the streets and made efforts to unblock water drainages which were blocked by piles of plastics, metal cans and discarded containers of various products.
Pope Francis believes that young people have what it takes to mobilize each other in bringing significant change within the society, in environmental protection, and in being missionaries of mercy.
“Let us be the protectors of the creation of God’s plan inscribed in nature, protectors of one another and of the environment” Pope Francis said.
He speaks about the ‘throwaway’ culture that has affected the environment and people including the elderly and the poor as they are discarded as waste.
Tinotenda Wakabikwa, National movement of Catholic Students (NMCS) President encouraged the youth to take the responsibility to keep the environment clean and also to give awareness to the people in various communities.
“We need to correct our past errors as students and proactively prevent further pollution of our environment,” Wakabikwa urged the students.
Kudzai Madzamba, the Vice President of NMCS, said the group’s action campaign aims at raising awareness for students to be responsible in maintaining the environment and to correct and exemplify how much students and the community need to keep the environment clean.
She appealed to all youths with capacity to support similar student campaigns to come on board in order to work towards a sustainable and clean environment.
The campaign is one of the movement’s action plans for the year following a series of discussions on environment, global warming and climate change issues inspired by the Pope’s encyclical on environment, Laudato Si.