Climate guardians

Daisy Darwall-Smith pays a visit to Eco Tots, a new toddler play group for climate concerned parents

Credit: Wui Ling Phang for ArtistsForClimate.org

Amid the sounds of playful shrieks and giddy laughter, new parents are coming together at a toddler play group in Walthamstow to discuss a serious topic: the climate crisis.

Eco Tots was founded by Amy Woolfson, who is currently on maternity leave from her career as a barrister. Amy felt called to action while having her baby girl at Whipps Cross Hospital during a particularly intense heat wave.

Recalling her daughter’s birth, she says: “It was so hot that it was unsafe, and the hospital staff said that the building just wasn’t made to withstand so much heat”. It made her consider that if her baby wasn’t even safe in the hospital where she was born, then something needed to be done.

Amy recycles and doesn’t fly but wants to do something outside of her small family unit. “With Eco Tots I aim to bring together and build a community of like minded families so we can educate ourselves about the climate crisis, biodiversity and sustainability. I want us to make an impact beyond my own home and beyond the group.”

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Founder Amy expresses that it’s important to her that the group is fun and non-judgemental as well as impactful, and that there is plenty of opportunity for people to get involved. Children below the age of two are welcome and all the babies and toddlers present played happily on a rug with toys laid out.

Emily, a member of the group says that the current state of the climate emergency was a consideration in having children at all. “It was a big factor in even having children for me. It frustrates me that I’m being eco-conscious in what I do, but you need bigger powers to make change.”

Another mother Kate adds: “It’s important to me to make the world a better place as my daughter gets older, and I want to be able to tell her that I did something.”

The group runs on the last Thursday of every month from 10-11.30am at The Mill Community Centre in Walthamstow.

Contact Amy at [email protected] for more information

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