One of the core team members of Climate Emergency Manchester, Calum McFarlane, has compiled a list of resources for parents who are worried about climate change. Although he includes the writings, ideas and groups that have enabled him and other parents to process their emotion and take timely action, the resources can be helpful for a wider audience. It includes things that you can do to change your lifestyle AND fight for systemic change (avoiding the false binary of individual vs collective action). There are also links to things you should read and think about, as well as resources to talk to children about climate change.
Another remarkable source we keep returning to is the ‘Audacious Toolkit: Actions Against Climate Breakdown’ by Dr Julia Steinberger, and any of her blog posts, really! She conveys the urgency of the climate crisis while also highlighting actionable steps that we can take as individuals and collective groups.
Climate scientist and author Peter Kalmus has also written an opinion piece on living with the knowledge of the climate crisis
We also highly recommend the following videos which focus on the psychology of climate action:
Rosemary Randall’s brilliant talk “Climate, Psychology, Conversation: The unconscious dynamics of how we talk about climate change” is a MUST-WATCH and can be accessed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqXtJt9OoLA
Britt Way’s talk “How climate change can affect your mental health” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IlDkCEvsYw
Caroline Hickman’s excellent article on climate psychology: “What psychotherapy can do for the climate and biodiversity crisis” https://theconversation.com/what-psychotherapy-can-do-for-the-climate-and-biodiversity-crises-116977 and her response to a young student terrified of the climate crisis – https://theconversation.com/im-up-late-at-night-worrying-about-global-warming-please-can-you-put-my-mind-at-rest-124940. Also, her Ted Talk on the psychological barriers to climate change is worth a watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yXDHazepUw
Greenpeace have created an infographic that references Carole Hickman’s writing in a quick, concise format: https://www.instagram.com/p/CEyABi8haJL/
A mini-lecture by Dr Kate Jeffery, Professor of Behavioural Neuroscience at UCL on ‘The Psychology of Climate Inaction’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R6YMWb0vUA
A vulnerably honest short video on scientists describing grief and hope about climate change: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fV34M7yH308
This isn’t a resource that is climate change specific, but Alessandra Pigni’s book The Idealist’s Survival Kit: 75 Simple Ways to Avoid Burnout may be some writing that is helpful.
This is another disclaimer that the authors of this handbook are not mental health professionals. If your climate grief and/or anxiety and depression is impacting your life beyond the point where you can function healthily, please seek professional help.
This is a list of both national and Manchester-specific organisations that you could contact:
NHS psychological therapies service (IAPT): https://www.nhs.uk/service-search/find-a-psychological-therapies-service/
MIND UK resources for therapy and counselling:
University of Manchester counselling service: https://www.counsellingservice.manchester.ac.uk/get-help/
University of Manchester self-help resources: https://www.counsellingservice.manchester.ac.uk/buildyourmentalhealthexpertise/
MMU counselling service:
Salford University counselling service:
We intend to do another edition, so if you’ve found something wrong with this page, or you have comments, you can either leave a comment below, or else email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
If you like this handbook, and you’re reading this before November 10th 2020, and you live, work or study within Manchester City Council’s boundaries, please sign the petition for a seventh scrutiny committee, then share the petition with seven of your friends…
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