Here's how a depressed 11-year old went on to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 5 years

Here's how a depressed 11-year old went on to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 5 years

  • Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old climate activist, was among the nominees for the 100th Nobel Peace Prize.
  • She is known for an angry, tearful speech to the world leaders at the United Nations Climate Action Summit saying, 'How dare you! You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words.'
  • She and 10 other children have filed a lawsuit against the governments of the world's five biggest carbon emitters.
  • She has met world leaders like Barack Obama, led the world’s largest youth climate change movement and garnered attention of millions of people including Elon Musk.
Greta Thunberg has evolved from a 11-year old student skipping school on Fridays to sit outside the Swedish Parliament — to become the torchbearer of world’s largest global youth movement against climate change.

Her work earned her a nomination for the 100th Nobel Peace Prize, which was later awarded to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Greta kickstarts her famous “Friday for future” movement

In the last one year, Greta did something most kids would — skipping school. But unlike many, she would spend that time protesting outside the Swedish Parliament, demanding action on climate change.

She vowed to continue the school strike, popularly known as “Friday for future” movement, until Swedish government adhered to the climate change policies as per the Paris agreement.

As expected, her brave act inspired about 4 million people around the world to go on strike and demand similar action from governments and businesses to save the planet.

The journey started when she suffered severe depression at the age of 11 as she realised that the government wasn’t acting to control climate change. She stopped going to school or speaking to anyone outside her family, and even stopped eating.

Doctors at the child and youth psychiatry discovered she is suffering from malnutrition, reported a swedish daily, Degan Nyhether.

A year later, she refused to board flights or eat meat as her personal contribution to her cause.

An essay competition had changed Greta’s life

When she was in 9th grade, she won a climate change essay competition where she wrote about activism. Three months later, she did what she wrote about.

On August 2018, she posted a picture of herself striking in front of Swedish parliament with a caption “We children don’t usually do what you grown-ups tell us to do. We do as you do. And since you don’t give a shit about my future. I don’t give a shit either.”

This was right before the country was going for general elections in September, 2018. And, the rest became history.

Later that year, Thunberg addressed United Nations climate change summit, accusing the world leader for not being “not mature enough to tell it like is”. The video of the speech went viral on social media with 9.8 million views on Brut UK’s Facebook.

Greta Thunberg inspired a million students to carry out 2,000 protests

In January this year, she addressed delegates at the World Economic Forum in Davos--and told them why they should be worried.

The determined young girl inspired a million students to carry out around 2,000 protests. It culminated into the first Global Climate Strike for Future in 125 countries on March 15, 2019. Soon, Greta became a social media sensation inspiring over a million on her instagram.

She also caught the attention of scientist Elon Musk.He tweeted Thunberg is a "16 year old who has better reasoning [and] more heart than the vast majority of political leaders.”

But also faced severe backlash, especially from the conservatives in the US. President Donald Trump mocked Greta and sarcastically wrote “She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. It's so nice to see!” along with the video of her UN speech. Russian President Vladimir Putin is also amongst the most vocal critics of Greta.

Yet, a lot of people around the world had been rooting for Greta. Had she won, Thunberg would have become the youngest person ever to win a Nobel Peace Prize.


See also:
Greta Thunberg addressed world leaders through tears: 'How dare you! You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words.