Severn Suzuki was a 12-year old girl who spoke at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 about her concerns and hopes for the future of our planet and future generations. Twenty years later in Rio, on the occasion of the Rio+20 global environmental summit, Severn Suzuki delivered a 6-minute speech the Rio+Social event to inspire and empower people all over the world to submit videos via social media speaking on their vision of a more sustainable future.
Utilizing social media platforms, Rio+Social was able to connect the live audience in Rio with global citizens online to discuss ways to harness technology and digital media to power sustainable growth. Rio+Social brought together thought leaders, issue experts, corporate innovators, digital media gurus, global advocates, and other prominent voices to engage in unique high-level conversations about sustainable development.
“Every minute, social media and technology is opening doors for new, young voices to participate in and shape the ongoing international development debate,” said Kathy Calvin, CEO of the UN Foundation. “World leaders are listening, and better yet, working in collaboration with these #socialgood pioneers to change how we approach global solutions.”
A highlight of the event was this crowdsourced 6-minute speech, delivered by Severn Suzuki.
The 1992 video footage of Severn Cullis-Suzuki addressing world leaders at the age of 12 at the Rio Earth Summit is often referred to as the “The Girl Who Silenced the World for 6 Minutes“. Watch this inspiring video below, which went viral with over 21 million views:
Rio+Social is an innovative partnership with the United Nations Foundation, Mashable, 92nd Street Y, Ericsson, EDP, LiveAD and Planeta Sustentável.