At least 85 indigenous reserves in Canada don't have safe drinking water but they have an advocate. At just 13 years old, Autumn Peltier has become an internationally known advocate for water protection, especially for Canada's indigenous people. She’s challenged Trudeau personally What's next? The United Nations. Autumn, who lives in Wikwemikong First Nation in northern Ontario, will get an even bigger audience nextspring, when she will address the United Nations General Assembly in New York for the declaration of the International Decade for Action on Water for Sustainable Development. Autumn is known for her passion and her poise, and has become an in-demand speaker at larger and larger events. "Water is one of the most sacred elements in our culture because we use this water in ceremony," she explains. Autumn is in high demand, and she often has to turn events down just so she can have a normal childhood. When she is not travelling the world, Autumn is a regular teenager who loves her pets, Instagram and making crafts with her friends -including bracelets she sells to raise money for a local community without clean water. But she wants her future to be anything but ordinary. After going to university and law school, she has set her sights on Canada's top job. "I want to be prime minister or minister of environment," she says. Fuck yeah Autumn!
14-year-old Melissa Shang is working to change the way society perceives people with disabilities -- and recently published a book to show other kids that "a disability is just part of you but it’s not all you are." Melissa, who has a form of muscular dystrophy called Charcot-Marie-Tooth, says that “I have not seen many books with girls like me so I thought why not tell my own story?” Her middle grade novel is fiction loosely based on her own life. It stars a girl in a wheelchair who, like its author, loves making films with her friends -- and, critically, her disability isn't the central focus of the story. “For the most part, despite my wheelchair and knowledge of medical terminology.... my daily reality is mostly the same as that of my classmates,” wrote the Massachusetts rising star in a recent op-ed. “I groan over the same math and science homework, giggle with the same friends, and, like every other adolescent, I probably spend too much time on my phone. As a girl with a disability, I know that my story is not a sad one.”
Have a positive week,
Love Neon Moon x
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