Hundreds demand action on climate change in Nambucca

A few hundred locals have gathered together in Nambucca Heads to voice their concerns about the absence of direct action on man-made climate change.

Students from most schools in our Valley - including some preschools - rallied at the Nambucca Community and Arts Centre in a show of solidarity with the movement which was started by one lone schoolgirl on the other side of the world.

"When people question your ability to change anything, don't forget where this movement started. Greta Thunberg has proved that one child has the power to achieve great things," one of the supporting adults said over the microphone.

The students we spoke to were resolute in their right to attend the protest on a school day.

"We are missing our lessons so we can teach you one," one sign read.

Jasmin Salter was there with a couple of her school mates and had this to say: "We're here because our Earth is struggling to survive and noone seems to be doing anything about it, so we're taking a stand".

Alex Pirani learnt about the strike at her school and felt compelled to attend: "I came here because I want to fight for my future - unless we do something about it [climate change] I'm not going to have much of one".

And young Beau Hussell was moved enough by the turnout today to share his thoughts over the loudspeaker.

Beau Hussell addressing the crowd

Beau Hussell addressing the crowd

"I'm here because I want to have grandchildren one day. And I'd really like my parents to meet them," he said.

Bumajin led the rally in a group song and smoking ceremony before encouraging everyone to look beyond racial barriers and take action as one.

"We're all brothers and sisters. If we don't come together, none of us is going to have a place to live," he said.

Doctors, social workers, teachers, farmers, surfers, labourers, local politicians; people from a few months of age to many times more than that; people across a broad spectrum of skin and political colours then marched down Bowra Street to deafening car toots in support of their protest.

At one stage the march stretched down both sides of the main street - many onlookers remarked that they had no idea so many people felt this way in the Nambucca Valley.

"I thought you'd get a turnout like this in Bellingen or the likes, but never in my life did I expect to see one like this here," one elderly passerby commented.

Many were so energised by the march that once the procession made its way back to the Arts Centre they felt the urge to continue up past the Red School.

Rallies and marches are currently being staged all over the country, with police estimating there are at least 50,000 in attendance in Sydney.

Photo of the Sydney climate strike from above. Image by Dominic Lorrimer

Photo of the Sydney climate strike from above. Image by Dominic Lorrimer

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