Hello all! My name is Zoë Johnston and I’m the new Network Coordinator for UU Young Adults for Climate Justice. I’ve been a participant of the network for over a year and am eager to hold this role. I currently attend Arcadia University outside of Philadelphia and am majoring in International Studies with a minor in History. Although I live in Pennsylvania now, I grew up in Colorado and my heart still lies with the mountains. In my free time, I tend to my many houseplants and indulge in watching reality competition shows.
I’m a lifelong Unitarian Universalist and it is in part my faith that brings me to climate work. The 7th Principle has always resonated with me, to “respect the interdependent web of all life of which we are a part.” I think the most important piece is the recognition that we as humans are part of the web of life. We are not separate from the environment but are instead deeply influential in it. As convener of UU Young Adults for Climate Justice, I’m curious to explore how we can be in compassionate relationship with the environment.
With this intention to be in harmony with nature, it’s important for me to recognize the intersectionality of climate justice. Indigenous people have stewarded the land for generations even in the face of ongoing colonization. Climate justice is deeply connected to all of the other fights for liberation, therefore, I believe our understanding of it must be accompanied by a racial and class analysis. Our community of young adults comprises the vastness of identities and my work will be both in embracing that intersectionality in UUYACJ spaces and bringing it to external projects.
As a covenantal faith, I believe that one of our responsibilities is to hold one another in care. My hope is that UUYACJ will be a place to gather with one another, nurture your spirit, and receive the necessary support to continue this work. I’m looking forward to making meaningful connections across the network and taking bold actions together.