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What’s the Deal?

Are we going to have a deal tonight? All that is left to do for the Project Survival NL team is wait and hope. While it is crunch time for the world leaders inside the Bella Center to rack out a credible climate deal, we cannot do much more than keep a close eye on the news with our fingers crossed.

The picture was totally different earlier this week: we had our hands full with all sorts of exciting events. Our second week at the COP15 started with a definite highlight. On Monday morning part of the team had a meeting with the Dutch Ministers of Environment and Development Cooperation, Jaqueline Cramer and Bert Koenders. Together with them and the Dutch youth representatives we discussed our project and the Dutch youth statements. It was an interesting meeting and informal meeting in which both Ministers expressed their sympathy for the project and agreed that youth participation is a very important issue in climate change talks. It was not only the Dutch part of the group that got to speak to their Ministers, also our African youth delegates met various Ministers. A few of them got opportunities to prepare speeches and briefings for their Ministers.

The beginning of the week was however not all fun and games for everyone. A few of our project members spent most of Monday out in the cold due to poor organisation. It also soon became clear that due to new restrictions many people with NGO badges would not be able to enter the Bella Center anymore as of Tuesday. Luckily most of the African youth delegates had a Party badge, but a number of us would not be able to get in anymore. We had a number of secondary badges for Tuesday and Wednesday but from Thursday onwards our whole team has been moving between various makeshift offices in the alternative fora in town. The last couple of days we spent trying to attract some media attention, following the talks on various screens and just taking a break from the hassle at the Bella Center.

Now, as the final official hours of the conference have arrived (it looks like the talks are going to be lengthened though) we have some time to reflect on what we did and I think we can be proud. Proud of our little project and the fact that we made it to Copenhagen, but even more proud of work that Ebrima, Ezilon, Margaret, Matildah, Mangaliso, Hubert, Claude, Mahawa and Matias have been able to do for their countries. Now it is up to Obama, Jiabao, Reinfeldt and co to make us proud of being part of humanity! Whatever the outcome, we’re off for a good African dinner with our team before we split up again and spread out over precious globe.  The food will taste a whole lot better knowing that everyone´s survival will be guaranteed though!

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