We Are The Ocean

Visit Princesshay and be inspired by UK and UAE children’s poetry and artwork displayed in large format with a simple aim and message about protecting and restoring our ocean!

Did you know that over 70% of the earth’s surface is covered in water and that every second breath you take comes from the ocean. The ocean is also home to the largest mountain range and the deepest canyon. Let that sink in! This project takes the voices if young people who have a vision for a better future for our planet.

In 2023, the University of Exeter twinned 14 coastal schools in the UK and UAE as part of the Schools Across The Ocean programme. Over 400 children aged 10-12 worked with marine scientists, teachers, writers, translators, and artists to find out about and share how all living things on the planet rely on a healthy Ocean.

The ‘We Are The Ocean’ anthology, in English and Arabic, is a jigsaw of all 400 children’s words, thoughts, worries, discoveries, pictures, conversations, and hopes. Because of what they have learnt together, they have taken and will continue to take action to heal and save our one and only ocean. The anthology was launched at COP28 Climate Change Conference in Dubai in 2023 and presented to world leaders.

On Tuesday 25th June from 4pm – 6pm in Princesshay Square, all are invited to see, hear and learn more about this important project. The event will include a live multimedia celebration with live performances and music, poetry in English and Arabic, whale song and more!

This project is part of a wider ‘We Are The Possible’ initiative, which is a collaborative interdisciplinary international programme that co-creates new narratives to imagine a liveable future for all. Working at the interface of science, health, education, and the arts, it has brought together thousands of people from the UK and UAE to reflect upon the plight of our planet and deliver a creative and inspiring response to catalyse climate action and solutions at COP28 Climate Change Conference in Dubai and beyond.

We Are The Possible is a partnership between the Met Office, the Emirates Literature Foundation, Khorfakkan University, British Institute for Modern Music (BIMM), The Theatre of Others, and other collaborators and was funded by the British Embassy in United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Met Office, and UKRI.

Find out more about the project by following these links.

We Are the Ocean UK book launch https://greenfutures.exeter.ac.uk/article/schoolchildren-presented-with-copies-of-uk-uae-illustrated-poetry-anthology-they-helped-to-create/

We Are the Ocean COP28 UAE launch https://greenfutures.exeter.ac.uk/article/schoolchildren-in-the-uk-and-united-arab-emirates-issue-poetic-rallying-cry-for-the-worlds-ocean-at-cop28/

We Are the Possible website https://greenfutures.exeter.ac.uk/our-impact/we-are-the-possible/

We Are the Ocean https://greenfutures.exeter.ac.uk/our-impact/we-are-the-possible/we-are-the-ocean/