Training and peer learning to expand capacity and opportunities for climate communication, education, and action across Greater Minnesota
This collaborative project addressed awareness-raising, education, and capacity needs identified by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 13 — to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
Through a climate communicators cohort program, we aimed to equip trusted community messengers in Greater Minnesota with the tools and confidence to engage in effective climate conversations, build community climate literacy, and accelerate climate action across Minnesota.
In a survey distributed by MCAP to Regional Sustainable Development Partnership (RSDP) staff, we identified climate misinformation and controversy as barriers to engaging in climate conversations, indicating a clear need for training and support for fostering constructive dialogue. Research suggests that local stories and messengers can make a difference when the message is framed correctly, illuminating personal observations of changes and presenting concrete, action-oriented arguments in support of climate change.
This pilot project trained 20 trusted community messengers across Greater Minnesota in solutions-oriented climate change communication and supported participants in engaging in community-based conversations.
Minnesota Extension and NW Regional Sustainable Development Partnership
This project is funded by
- The University of Minnesota (U of M) Global Programs and Strategy Alliance (GPS Alliance)
- University of Minnesota Sustainable Development Goals Initiative
- University of Minnesota Extension
- West Central Initiative