First Person

Captured on film: a climate wake-up call from around the world

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Loko Dadacha. Photo: Eva-Lotta Jansson / Oxfam America
Loko Dadacha. Photo: Eva-Lotta Jansson / Oxfam America

After two weeks away from the office on a personal trip to Japan, I came back today to find hundreds of emails piled up in my inbox. But once I plowed my way through the spam and the endless Outlook meeting invitations, I discovered something really exciting: a link to Oxfam’s new short video about how climate change affects poor people in countries like El Salvador, Ethiopia, Vietnam, and the US.

This video holds a special significance for me, since back in August I was lucky enough to tag along as a crew filmed some of this footage in southern Ethiopia. In many ways, that trip (my first visit to Africa) is still very much on my mind: I can’t read an article about climate change without thinking about the striking effects of drought in those rural communities—and the amazing strength of the local people who are fighting back against the crisis.

One of those people is Loko Dadacha, a widow and mother of six who’s taken on a leadership role in helping her community prepare for droughts. Having read my colleague Coco’s stories about her, I have to admit I was a little bit awed by meeting Loko in person, not to mention impressed by her patience as a film crew and a crowd of Oxfam staffers followed her every move for an entire day.

“If you ask me what I wish… I would say I wish to see pasture growing, to have enough water. I wish to do things for myself—to be self-reliant,” says Loko near the end of this two-minute video. Her words really capture the way these communities are facing the massive changes in the climate: with toughness, determination, and incredible resilience.

Check out the video here: Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Google+