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Profile: Willa Karr

Updated: May 10, 2020

When I was younger, I spent most of my weekends in the Catskill Mountains in the southern part of NY State. My parents had a friend there who owned a remote cabin on the outskirts of a nearby forest; the closest store was over 50 miles away. Because we were so isolated, we grew our own food and raised our own chickens right beside the cabin.  Everything we brought into the house and put into our mouths had come from the land outside. Because I knew how much effort and dedication was put into cultivating our food, I appreciated my meals that much more. During those weekends at the cabin, I realized just how much we depend on the environment to survive and just how much we take that for granted.

When Monday rolled around and I had to return to NYC for school, things were completely different. Surrounded by buildings and noise and with access to a multitude of supermarkets just around the corner, it was easy to forget about our dependence on nature and overlook the history behind the food we were eating. In a bustling city like New York, it is even easier to forget that there are people around the world that are not as privileged as we are. Most people cannot simply leave the house to purchase the resources they need. A large percent of the world's population depend on their land to feed and support themselves and their families.

 This makes climate change a very real and scary thing to these people that rely on the land and environment to survive. Extreme weather conditions, increasing temperatures, and reduction of water availability (all byproducts of climate change), can leave these people without food or resources. Unfortunately, in a city like NY, it is hard for us to look beyond what we are exposed to to see that issues like climate change are directly and disproportionately affecting other parts of the world. This is why I decided to join FXB. FXB focuses their attention on these places and communities that are most vulnerable to this issue. Through online panels and discussions, we reach out to people across the globe to hear how they have been affected by environmental changes, how they are addressing the problem, and how we can help advocate for them. FXB gives us, as young people, the ability to look beyond our experiences and connect to our planet while also providing us with resources to help fight climate change. 

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