Archana Soreng has been selected as one of the seven members of Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change established by the Secretary-General of the United Nations as a part of UN Youth Strategy. Archana holds a Master’s in Regulatory Governance from Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS). Soreng has been working for awareness about climate change and preservation for many years.
Soreng believes even though the indigenous people have immense contribution in protection and restoration of Nature and are real guardians of the forest and warriors of the climate crisis, they are vulnerable and on the verge of extinction as their rights over their forest and land are not recognised. “Our ancestors have been protecting the forest and nature over the ages through their traditional knowledge and practices. Now it is on us to be the front runners in combating the climate crisis,” said Soreng.
About Archana Soreng
Hailing from the Khadia Tribe, Archana Soreng belongs to Odisha’s Sundergarh district. She was also the former president of the TISS student union. Soreng is “experienced in advocacy and research, and she is working to document, preserve, and promote traditional knowledge and cultural practices of indigenous communities,” the UN said in a statement on 27 July. Archana Soreng pursued her Bachelors in Political Science from the Patna Women’s College. She is also the former National Convener of Tribal Commission at Adivasi Yuva Chetna Manch, All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF). Currently, she is a Research Officer at TISS Forest Rights and Governance Project in Vasundhara, Odisha.
Role of tribal communities in climate activism
Archana also emphasises on the need to recognise the role of tribal communities in climate activism and the need to protect the rights of indigenous people in the face of environmental destruction and land encroachment. “Time and again, it has been witnessed that investment in the land of Adivasi and Forest-dwelling communities have deprived them of their traditional lands, viable livelihoods and their socio-economic and cultural rights. Alienating them from their sustainable and their self-sufficient way of life, it puts them in a vicious cycle of poverty” she said.
Other Members At The Youth Advisory Group
The other selected members of the group are climate activist Nisreen Elsaim of Sudan, Fiji’s Ernest Gibson, the co-coordinator for 350 Fiji, a regional youth-led climate change network. Vladislav Kaim of Moldova who is committed to ensuring green and decent jobs for youth is also a part of the panel. Sophia Kianni of the United States who has helped organise nationwide strikes and is the founder of international nonprofit Climate Cardinals and lawyer and human rights defender Paloma Costa of Brazil will also be joining this body.
Anureet Watta is an Intern for SheThePeople TV.