Autumn Peltier is a 13-year-old girl that already has years of advocacy behind her. She has already met the prime minister of Canada, she has attended the Assembly of First Nations Annual General Assembly, and she has marched on the highway in the name of water protection.
The 13-year-old Peltier is now a nominee for the International Children’s Peace Prize.
She is the only Canadian candidate out of the 151 nominees for the International Children’s Peace Prize that were recently announced.
The Anishinaabe teen from Wikwemikong First Nation has been advocating for clean drinking water since she was 8 years old and she is already considered a water protector, just like her aunt Josephine Mandamin, who received the Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation in 2016. The International Children’s Peace Prize is awarded to a child who has worked to improve children’s lives around the world.
Peltier was invited to the Children’s Climate Conference in Sweden in 2015, and she has been recognized internationally for her work.
She said in the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris that water is really sacred, water is life, and Mother Earth doesn’t need us, but we need her.
Peltier had a speech prepared for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the Assembly of First Nations Annual General Assembly in 2016, but she was only given a few moments to interact with him.
She told The Huffington Post Canada last year that she told Trudeau that she’s very unhappy with the choices she’s made, and he told her that he understands that. Then she started crying and all she got to say is “the pipelines”. Peltier launched a national call to action in November last year, and she invited everyone to participate in the shutdown of highways across Canada for an hour on December 5 as a way to promote water protection.
The 13-year-old works to spread awareness about protecting water, and she pleads that we were only given one planet, and we’re destroying it.
The International Children’s Peace Prize will be awarded on December 4.