Emeli Sande has spoken about the impact the climate crisis had on her family in Zambia and said women are often disproportionately affected.
The Scottish singer will join stars including Natalie Dormer, Sandi Toksvig and Nicola Coughlan at the #March4Women event campaigning for climate justice and gender equality on Sunday.
She told the PA news agency: “My heritage is Zambian and I have a lot of family over there, all my dad’s family are in Zambia, and just over the past year I’ve been reading about how the climate crisis has really been affecting lot of sub-Saharan African countries, Zambia included in that, and often it’s the women who are already (victims of) social injustice and are already up against so much, they are being left completely vulnerable in this crisis.
Why is #ClimateChange a #feminist issue? Why should we #March4Women on 8th March? Muna @nomadinthecity_ from our #March4Women partner @friends_earth explains. March with us: https://t.co/fgxDEK3VmN #feminism #WednesdayWisdom pic.twitter.com/mUEASsmfCJ— careintuk (@careintuk) February 26, 2020
“I think that was another reason that I really wanted to get involved because I don’t think the media has really covered it to the extent in which it should be, the emergency a lot of people are finding themselves in, I think more people should be aware of it.
“My family are a farming family so this year has been quite difficult in terms of harvest and I think they are experiencing more droughts than usual and it’s just so unfair that countries that are least affecting global warming are being affected the worst.”
Other activists joining the event on International Women’s Day include Kaiser Chiefs singer Ricky Wilson, 1917 actor George MacKay and W1A star Jessica Hynes, as well as London mayor Sadiq Khan.
#InternationalWomensDay is this Sunday and Iâm joining @careintuk on the #March4Women— Nicola Coughlan (@nicolacoughlan) March 2, 2020
This year will focus on the testimonies of women and girls who are suffering most through the devastating effects of climate change 🌍
Sign up here to join us 🧡https://t.co/p8xDT51y5b pic.twitter.com/rKHMOZB2tz
Sande said: “I think it’s wonderful, all the online movements, Me Too and people realising there’s connections we can have through the internet, but for me nothing is more powerful than physical presence.
“I think just having all the women together and us all being able to communicate and network with one another and show physical presence and really demand what we think is fair, I think it’s so essential that we can do that and it goes beyond just one day.
“There are so many appalling injustices that women face around the world and just kind of raising my voice for this day is wonderful and then if we can echo that throughout the year it would be really powerful.”
She added that she is not concerned about the outbreak of coronavirus affecting the day, saying: “I haven’t really thought about that to be honest. I’m not too concerned about it.
“We are in an emergency situation but for me the importance of being there overwrites that for me and I don’t want to stop living my life or experiencing what is out there with the fear of that.
“I hope we are all safe, I hope we are kind of protected on the day, somehow, but for me I’m just going to go and face my destiny, whatever it may be.”