Name: Maryam Eqan

Country: Pakistan

Gender: Female

Age: 18 – 24 years old

Courses completed: Completed Courses: Introduction to Sustainable Finance, Advancing on REDD+, Open Online Course on Gender and Environment, Sustainable Diet, Green Fiscal Policy, Climate Change: From Learning to Action, Children and Climate Change, Climate Change International Legal Regime, ndicators for an inclusive green economy: Introductory course, Integrating Climate Risk Information into NAPs. Courses to be completed: Integrating Climate Risk Information into NAPs,  Introduction to Sustainable Finance.

Story ID: 326


I am Maryam Eqan, a 23-year-old girl from a South Asian country Pakistan.

Currently, I am doing MPhil in Environmental Sciences as environment, climate and sustainable development has remained to be my passion since 2016. Since then, I have been involved in various environment-related declamations, awareness walks, campaigns, and programmes as a participant and later as an organizer. But back then, I didn’t feel myself intellectually equipped enough the way the environment and climate activism required. And fortunately, I came to know about UNCC Learn that has all the related courses to educate the masses.

I enrolled myself and found the courses to be interesting, helpful, and well-organized with the full capability to educate and aware anyone from the very basics to high level linkages. This attraction ends me up doing almost 10 courses so far and almost 6 courses are yet to be completed. The courses provided me the right set of skills and knowledge and enabled me to establish my own environmental organization “The Earth Needs Love” that is a youth-led and youth-focused organization that works for environment, climate, and sustainable development. The story didn’t end here, and I joined various other environment and climate-based organizations to spread what I have learned from UNCC learn.

I have written over a score of articles, blogs, and research papers about environmental and sustainability concerns, conducted numerous youth and intergenerational dialogues, several green school programs, a number of climate strikes and infinite SDG awareness sessions. Now I am working to establish a women-focused and women-led initiative under my organization that will educate and empower women to work for environment as now I am able to build connections between climate change, gender, and children after completing the courses (Open Online Course on Gender and Environment and Children and Climate Change) from UNCC learn. Till now, I have gathered a youth workforce of almost 200 young people who tirelessly work with me to spread environment and climate awareness globally via virtual world and in four different countries (Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, and Kenya) through in-person interactions and activities. UNCC Learn has provided me the opportunity to contribute to Virtual Youth Dialogues organized by UNCC learn.

The courses offered by theme provided me with the right skill set that helped me to achieve various achievements like declaration as “World Environment Day Hero” by United Nations Environment Programme in 2019 and as a “Food System Hero” by United Nations Food System Summit in 2021 in recognition of my exemplary research and amplified outcomes from a sustainable food production system (Zero-Acreage Farming) as well as successful conduction of Independent Food System Dialogue in Pakistan. Moreover, I was invited by United Nations Convention for Biological Diversity as a Youth Delegate to Geneva in 2022 and as a viewer to participate in the fourth meeting of the Open-ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (WG2020-04). Lastly, I have been featured by United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in COP15 2022 as a winning submission for Women-led solutions to desertification, land degradation and drought. In addition to this, I have also contributed to the policy brief compiled by United Nations for High Level Political Forum 2022 which was related to sustainable energy, and the course like Gender Equality and Human Rights in Climate Action and Renewable Energy helped me a lot with that work. I believe that learning about environment and climate change should never stop as this is the keyway to achieve more and serve more as it sensitizes you to live sustainably and inspire and influence others to do so.

Does your story also contribute to gender equality?

My organization is a women-led organization as all of main administration comprises of women workforce due to their high commitment, professionalism and desire to work more for environment. We are also working to channelize an initiative “Women for Environment” to consider women as the key stakeholder and beneficiary. We aim to educate, empower and gather women from all around the globe to work for environmental conservation. In addition, for any program we launch, we always make sure to have equal participation of all genders.