Authors: Ambessa Cantave, Green For All Fellow
What is the power of one voice? Ambessa Cantave, Green For All Fellow, Hip Hop artist, activist, father, and educator with the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE), is using the power of his voice to activate a whole generation of eco-warriors, and it's working!
"I use my art of hip-hop music as a platform for raising awareness about climate change and how it impacts the economy and the health of communities that are historically marginalized from basic resources across the nation" says Ambessa the Articulate (that's his MC name).
Combine Ambessa's talent as an MC and his passion for empowering young people through hip hop culture with the Alliance for Climate Education's cutting-edge multi-media climate change presentation, and you've got the perfect formula for inspiring high school students to become climate heroes.
With ACE presentations in over 1200 schools thought the country so far, over 53,000 students have pledged to make lifestyle adjustments to combat climate change. Many others have chosen to take their activism to the next level by forming action teams on their campuses and being trained as leaders. To date, there are over 23,500 students engaged in action teams to address climate change on their campuses.
Ambessa was featured in the San Francisco Chronicle, who reported on his recent ACE presentation for 200 East Oakland students at Unity High School. Using alternative approaches to engaging Oakland youth of color is something Ambessa has been committed to ever since he moved to the Bay Area from the east coast about a decade ago. He has contributed his skills and dedication to some of the freshest leadership development programs for low-income youth of color in the Bay, such as Grind for the Green and United Roots: Oakland's Green Youth Arts and Media Center.
When Ambessa is not educating high school students through his work with ACE or in the studio making music, he is collaborating to develop social enterprise opportunities from conscious parties to arts-based green media and marketing.
This month we honor Ambessa Cantave for using his voice, his passion, and his entrepreneurial skills to inspire hope and most importantly action.