'Lots of kids are worried' - Flossie and Lucille set for protest
Two schoolchildren are determined to mark voting day by demonstrating outside their local authority headquarters as part of the global strike for climate action.
Flossie Donnelly (12) and her friend Lucille O'Mahony, from Dun Laoghaire, are to mark the day with a demonstration against plastic pollution outside county council buildings at 1pm.
The two student activists have left school early every Friday this year to demonstrate for climate action outside Government Buildings on Kildare Street, as part of the Fridays For Future movement.
Both Flossie and Lucille believe a lot of schoolchildren are concerned about climate change and how it will impact on their futures. Swedish activist Greta Thunberg has called on people all around the world to take part in demonstrations and marches.
Up to 1,263 locations in 107 countries will see demonstrations.
The first Global Strike For Climate in March saw an estimated 1.4 million students mobilise in 2,000 towns and cities worldwide
Flossie, who spends her free time clearing plastic waste from the South Dublin coastline, said: "Lots of kids are very worried about climate change, about species going extinct, about plastics in the ocean and rising CO2.
"I understand because I'm worried too. The answer is to do something - local action works.
"One person can't fix a global problem, but millions of people acting locally can."
Lucille and Flossie hope that holding a Global Climate Strike in Dun Laoghaire will make it easier for local students to get involved.
"It's hard to get into town from school in time so we hope that lots of local school students will come and join us at the county council buildings between 1pm and 2pm [today]," said Lucille.
The last time Flossie held a demonstration on plastic pollution in Dun Laoghaire more than 400 people showed up, demonstrating local interest in climate issues.
"We are too young to vote in the European and local elections but the people who win these elections will be making decisions that will seriously affect our future," she said.
"Dun Laoghaire is a coastal area - we must fight for it.
"We need to have our voices heard."
Both girls are part of the Coastal Conservation Action Group, Flossie and the Beach Cleaners.
The group raises awareness about plastic pollution and the damage it is doing to our marine life and oceans around Ireland and different parts of the world.
Alongside this, they host regular fun beach cleans around the country.