As you will know, 15th of May is the International Day of the Family. We will join ONLINE with the United Nations, who this year will analyse in different round tables the demographic changes that society is experiencing.
For next year’s edition, HRF has an exciting challenge: to present to the UN a report based on research and expert dialogue on Homes and Climate Emergencies.
The home has consistently been the most resilient and adaptable social and economic unit where fundamental challenges or changes to our world have been met, endorsed or resisted. From responding to natural disasters, divisions, conflicts or instability, family was the base from which resilience or rebuilding emerged and evolved. More recently, when COVID-19 global pandemic led to international lockdowns across the planet and social and economic systems came to a halt, our societies withdrew to the safe territory of the home and the social support of the family. As the economy, healthcare and social care moved from public systems to the local and community support system, the family was revealed again as the true centre of resilience and rebuilding.
In parallel, mobility and travel were curtailed, our carbon footprint was substantially reduced, our cities became greener, we turned to local suppliers, produce and social support. In the face of a global emergency, the home and family instantly and instinctively emerged as the resilient unit on which our society can rely and through which we can adapt and reset our systems and global operations. Lessons were learnt, adaptability and flexibility were tested, and it worked.
Why, therefore, should we look elsewhere to build resilience and response mechanisms to combat Climate Change?
HRF together with Nottingham Trent University and United Nations will be holding an Expert Meeting in September to explore the role home and family play in the transition towards a sustainable and carbon-neutral planet, where our carbon footprint is neutralised by offsetting our consumption with the production of clean energy and sustainable lifestyle.
Building on the lessons learnt during COVID-19 Pandemic, and the global response to a universal emergency, this meeting will bring experts, scholars and scientists from diverse disciplines, professions, and research backgrounds to debate the challenges and opportunities facing the home as societal institutions to achieve that goal. The meeting will try to respond to a key question, ‘how can we engage more effectively with the home and family as a resilient unit to help societies and economies combat Climate Change?’