Welcome to Students for Global Health’s Coordinated Theme! 

Coordinated Themes are voted on and contributed to by the whole network at Spring General Assemblies. They are a way to coordinate our education, advocacy and action efforts across the network around an issue central to our vision. They are proposed by SfGH members like you to bring an issue you care about to the centre of our work – so get thinking for next year! 

Climate Change and Health

Coordinated theme 2020/21

The coordinated theme for the SfGH network 2020/2021 is climate change and health. This means that the national committee, branches and members can all be involved in advocating on incredibly important cause, with the support of the coordinated theme team and the policy and advocacy director. With the COP26 United Nations Climate Change Conference being held in Glasgow next year, this is a pivotal time for achieving commitment to climate change mitigation and adaptation, and for health to be a key part of that commitment. The voice of the UK youth, in particular on the issue on climate change and health, has never been more important.

To implement much needed awareness raising, advocacy and action, the coordinated theme will be working alongside the COP26 National Working Group, branches, members and the SfGH National Committee to develop and implement climate focused research, advocacy and campaigns. This will be done in the two following phases outlined below.

You can follow the team, get updates and look out for opportunities on our social media accounts:

Phase 1 – Educate

In the first phase, our focus will be on delivering education by raising awareness on the impacts of climate change on health, within the UK as well as on a global scale. Furthermore, we will be increasing capacity for branches, and members of the SfGH network, on methods of awareness raising, campaigning and parliamentary engagement in preparation for the second phase. A range of mediums, including podcasts, campaigns, webinars, film screenings and conferences, will be used to execute this.

As part of this phase, we will also be campaigning to get climate change onto the medical curriculum, and other healthcare courses, within the UK. This will be done using the recently published IFMSA guide on including climate change to the medical curriculum, which has been accredited by the World Health Organisation; providing an invaluable opportunity to our branch members to have a say in their education. In addition, we will also be collaborating with the Planetary Health Report Cards initiative to assess universities’ contributions to planetary health and climate education.

We’ll also be spotlighting campaigns being done by our allies, so that our branches and members can be easily connected to the wider movement and climate action being taken by other actors.

Finally, the COP26 National Working Group will be leading efforts to gather data on the voice of the youth in regards to their wants from their UK Government, which will then be used to push for parliamentary lobbying and action.

Phase 2 – Advocate & Act

In addition to continuing our education-focused efforts, we will put our efforts towards implementing a range of campaigns on topics, including a just green transition, commitments to tackle the health impacts of climate change, World Environment Day, Youth Demands (using recently gathered data), COP26 commitments, and other joint campaigns with our partners and allies. We hope that all levels of the SfGH network will get involved in the advocacy initiatives, and we will push for further impact through our conferences and other International, National and Regional events. Alongside this, we will work in collaboration with a range of stakeholders, nationally and locally, to increase our outreach and impact to a wider audience. This will all be used to lobby government actors and other important stakeholders to tackle climate change and its impact on health.

How can branches and members get involved?

Branches and members can get involved at all stages of the campaign, and we’d love you to be thinking about what kind of events and initiatives you could take at the local level in line with the wider network aims. We’ll be keeping everyone up to date, and giving you lots of information about what you can do and when. 

Branches are welcome to suggest initiatives that they want to do, or they think the whole network should do! Please reach out to coordinatedtheme@studentsforglobalhealth.org with any questions or ideas!

Upcoming initiatives:

  • Briefing for branch leads and members on the campaign 
  • Open sessions for campaign planning, drop-ins and ideas sharing with the coordinated theme team
  • Bank of resources for branches

Ideas for branches and members:

  • Branches can run their own awareness raising initiatives on climate change and health in their university and local community, including a theme focussed workshop
  • Branches can participate in national awareness raising events such as webinars, podcast, talks, debates and film screenings
  • Branches can ‘host’ national awareness raising events and suggest their own
  • Branches are encouraged to initiative their own advocacy, campaigns and lobbying efforts in line with the network-wide demands and priorities
  • Branches are encouraged to collaborate with our campaign partners at the local level
  • Branches will be an essential part of our political advocacy, and we will need them to be powerful voices e.g. reaching out to their MPs, submitting evidence, amplifying demands

Previous Coordinated Themes

Sustainable Development Goals (2017-2018)

Homelessness and health (2018-2019)

Climate change and Health (2019-2020)