CitizenKid: Earth Comes First Trailer from White Pine Pictures on Vimeo.
Sudbury youth climate activist stars in documentary TV series
Earth Comes First will air on YTV’s The Zone on World Environment Day
TORONTO, May 14, 2020 – On the United Nations’ World Environment Day, Corus Entertainment brings families a new Corus Kids Original documentary, CitizenKid: Earth Comes First (1x22min), highlighting four Canadian youth activists with a shared passion for making the world a better place. Premiering on Friday, June 5 at 5:30 p.m. ET/PT on YTV, CitizenKid: Earth Comes First follows Hannah Alper, Cooper Price, Charlene Rocha and Sophia Mathur as they set out to raise awareness of climate change issues and empower kids to take action. Produced by White Pine Pictures, CitizenKid: Earth Comes First is inspired by the award-winning CitizenKid book collection from Corus Entertainment's Kids Can Press, designed to inspire kids to be better global citizens.
“In the midst of the challenging times we are currently facing, CitizenKid: Earth Comes First is a motivational, intelligent and stimulating take on climate change from the perspective of today’s youth,” said Colin Bohm, Executive Vice President, Content and Corporate Strategy, Corus Entertainment. “We hope families will watch this uplifting documentary together and discover, in their own big or small way, how they can make a difference within their community to help the planet.”
“Since its launch 11 years ago, the CitizenKid collection of books on global issues for young readers has sold over 1.6 million copies worldwide, in 21 languages and 28 territories, covering themes ranging from children’s rights to biodiversity to food and water security,” said Lisa Lyons Johnston, Publisher and President of Kids Can Press and Executive Producer of CitizenKid: Earth Comes First. “CitizenKid stories motivate young readers to look at their communities and the world, discover how they can contribute, and empower them to make change. With the growth of activism among younger and younger citizens, it only makes sense that the CitizenKid ethos would move from page to screen and involve these four inspiring young people in partnership with industry leaders White Pine Pictures and YTV.”
“The White Pine Pictures team has been honoured to partner with Lisa Lyons Johnston at Kids Can Press and the terrific folks at YTV to produce this important and entertaining documentary,” said Peter Raymont,
President of White Pine Pictures. “Young people are way ahead of most of us on climate change. They get it. We should listen to them, and act.”
The inspirational documentary provides a behind-the-scenes look at how these young activists use social media to amplify their voices to reach their peers, community, and people around the world, making it Corus Kids’ first original production to integrate social media outreach and engagement. To mobilize the country to unite on climate change issues, the documentary is asking Canadians to take part online in their #EarthComesFirst movement, which encourages people to pledge on social media how they put the Earth first in their everyday life, for example, shopping locally, walking or biking more often, or turning off the lights and electronics when not in use.. Starting today, Canadians can record a video with their pledge following the format below and post it on their social media account:
“Hi, my name is [Charlene Rocha] and I put Earth first by [using reusable water bottles.]” #EarthComesFirst @CitizenKidTV @ytvofficial #ytvofficial
Each a true activist in their own personal area of interest, Alper, Price, Rocha, and Mathur join forces in CitizenKid: Earth Comes First to raise awareness on a broad range of social and environmental issues. In the special, Alper and Price attend the Nature Based Climate Solutions Summit in Ottawa where they speak to Mandy Gull, member of the Cree First Nation of Waswanipi and Deputy Grand Chief of the Cree First Nation; and Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.
Meanwhile in Washington, D.C., Mathur and Rocha meet with the creators of Parachutes For The Planet, an initiative created by Mother Earth Project, a nonprofit organization founded in 2015 by internationally renowned sculptor and scientist Barton Rubenstein and his family. To raise awareness about the climate emergency, Mother Earth Project encourages individuals, schools, and communities around the world to decorate circular pieces of cloth with artwork and collective commitments to sustainable actions. Parachutes are a metaphor for bringing the planet back to a safe, sustainable world.
All four activists head to Washington, D.C. for Fridays For Future to meet youth involved in the climate strike event. Fridays For Future is a global movement that began in August 2018 after Greta Thunberg began striking every Friday outside the Swedish Parliament. Since then young people continue to gather and strike every Friday to demand more aggressive action from their governments and the international community.
Finally, inspired by the Nature Based Climate Solutions Summit, all four activists organize an environmental rally with the students at Equinox Holistic Alternative School, an environmentally conscious grade school in Toronto.
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