My Climate Story Storytelling Festival at WHYY
150 N. Sixth Street, Philadelphia, PA
On April 26, 2023, more than 150 Philadelphia high schoolers gathered at the WHYY headquarters for the first My Climate Story Storytelling Festival. This festival was the synthesis of a year's work with My Philadelphia Climate Story, a public research project in collaboration with PPEH, the School District of Philadelphia, and WHYY that encourages participants to consider global climate change on a personal scale.
Students from each school shared their climate stories, from how climate change causes torrential rain in their home countries to the “climate anxiety” they experience from the unpredictable heat waves. In another room, student docents from each school presented exhibits that showcased climate literacy projects from the integrated My Climate Story curriculum.
Other highlights from the festival included a panel discussion moderated by WHYY Climate and Environment Reporter Susan Phillips featuring climate stakeholders including an artist, teachers, and a policy expert. The day ended with a drag performance from John Jarboe of the Bearded Ladies singing as “the last polar bear on Earth,” a speech about activism from wildlife photographer and UPenn student Aman Sharma, and a moving story from Shawmar Pitts of Philly Thrive about his fight against a South Philadelphia refinery.