Students in my class, Climate Justice, at the United Methodist Women’s Mission U created Our Healthy Climate Quilt that is a collection of amazing stories of commitment from each student. It was fun, meaningful, and inspiring!

What is Climate Justice? Climate change disproportionately affects the poorest around the globe and they have done the least to cause climate change. That’s climate injustice. Climate Justice is when we act to reduce the activities that cause climate change, and help those who are suffering from its affects to survive.

Over the two-day course students created their personal story of why they care enough to do something about climate change, and what they intend to do about it. They wrote their stories on colorful squares to assemble Our Healthy Climate Quilt, and then several shared in a story circle.

One student originally from a Caribbean island told a moving story about her family’s experience with the Zika virus and said she didn’climatee-quilt-iiit realize that climate change is contributing to the spread of infectious diseases like Zika. She came away inspired to act to reduce the carbon emissions in her family’s life, and to educate her congregation here in Iowa about climate change and the religious response.

Working together in our full diversity, like colorful pieces of cloth sewn together to make a beautiful quilt, we can make a difference.

Sarah Paulos is the Program and Outreach Coordinator for Iowa Interfaith Power & Light. She can be reached at programs@iowaipl.org.