Wangari Maathai with her Nobel Peace Prize won in 2004.

1940 – 2011

“The generation that destroys the environment is not the generation that pays the price. That is the problem.”

Wangari Maathai was a Kenyan social, environmental and political activist and the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. In 1977, she founded the Green Belt Movement, a group that planted trees to prevent deforestation, in Kenya. Since then, more than 40 million trees have been planted across Kenya. Wangari was arrested and even attacked for being against developments that would harm the environment, but she never gave up the fight to save her country’s landscape. Her resilience proved that one person can change the world.

Even when things get tough, do you remain resilient and keep sight of your goals?

Find out about some other Amazing Africans in our free resource.  Primary | Secondary

Rachel Carson is another inspiring environmentalist worth exploring. She was a woman scientist who helped to bring awareness and urgency to the environmental movement through her writing. Her book, Silent Spring, warned of the devastating effects of using pesticides and prompted a strong backlash from the chemical industry. It brought the issue to the attention of President JFK’s government and ultimately led to a reversal of pesticide policy in the USA.

Do just one thing! How can you be a climate communicator? Use your character strengths to find one thing that you can do to spread the word about taking positive action on the environment.

Photo: Nobel Committee, CC BY-SA 4.0