Young people challenge world leaders in new Sky Kids Original, COP26: In Your Hands. Are they listening?

Monday 27 September 2021
  • COP26: In Your Hands premieres on Sky Kids and streaming service NOW on 18 October ahead of UN Climate Change Conference, COP26
  • The one-off documentary is introduced by HRH The Prince of Wales and features commentary from UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as host of COP26

Sky announces a one-off documentary, COP26: In Your Hands, which launches on Sky Kids and streaming service NOW on 18 October ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference, COP26 in November.

The 30-minute Sky Original documentary, commissioned by Sky Kids, COP26: In Your Hands is introduced by HRH Prince Charles who outlines his concerns for the planet. The programme also features UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as the host of COP26.

As world leaders prepare to gather in Glasgow, six young climate activists from six different continents deliver a powerful message about how climate change is already having an impact on their lives and deliver an emotive call to action. The campaigners care deeply about the environment and have become concerned about the damage we’re doing to our planet. All of them have ideas about what needs to be done to save the Earth.

The teenagers representing the world’s six habitable continents in the documentary are Darielen, aged 15 from Brazil; Hannah, aged 17 from the UK; Kynan, aged 16 from Indonesia; Queen, aged 17 from Cameroon; Sophia, aged 15 from Canada, and 16-year-old Tamsyn, from Australia.

COP26: In Your Hands was filmed locally on location as part of Sky’s championing of sustainability. Sky is a Principal Partner and Media Partner to COP26 and has committed to be net zero carbon by 2030, cutting its own emissions and those made by customers’ using its products, by 50% over the next decade. COP26: In Your Hands is supported by the UK-Government funded Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF), which is managed by the BFI and finances the creation of new distinct, high-quality content for children and young audiences. The documentary is also supported by WWF.

Each film explores how these countries are already seeing the devastating impact of climate change, including rising temperatures, ice caps melting, droughts, flooding, bushfires, wildlife depletion and soya plantations, all through the eyes of the next generation, and highlights some of the inspirational projects in their countries tackling the climate emergency.

Lucy Murphy, Director of Kids Content, Sky, said: “We all have a responsibility to do what we can to help protect our planet for the next generation. With Sky Kids, we want to produce content that not only inspires, excites, and engages young people but also helps them learn about important issues, such as climate change. COP26: In Your Hands features six incredible teenagers, whose actions and words I believe will really resonate with our audiences. I hope this film inspires many to take action.”

Chris Rogers, Creative Director of Fresh Start Media said: Greta Thunberg has been a great inspiration for so many young people. But when we set out to make this documentary, we really wanted to get a sense of who else was out there doing great work to highlight what’s been happening with our climate. This programme is really a message in a bottle to world leaders. These young activists want the politicians not just to talk about climate change or make more announcements about what they’re going to do in the distant future, but to listen to what they have to say and take action now.”

Jackie Edwards, Head of The Young Audiences Content Fund said: “The YACF exists to support the creation of unique and diverse shows for children and young people in this country. We are thrilled to have supported COP26: In Your Hands, which will give young audiences in the UK the opportunity to have their voices heard and their views on change reflected on screen.”

As well as being available to watch on Sky Kids and streaming service NOW, COP26: In Your Hands will also be available for streaming directly into every school in the UK on First News Education TV, the online channel from First News, the UK’s only newspaper for children.

Sky Kids’ COP26: In Your Hands is part of Sky’s work to highlight the climate crisis, and through Sky Zero, Sky is working to raise awareness about looking after the planet for the next generation, and environmental programming for children is part of how Sky can inspire kids and parents to look after the world they live in. As one of Europe’s leading broadcasters, Sky believes it has a responsibility to use its reach and voice to help drive important behavioural changes when it comes to the environment.

COP26: In Your Hands is a Fresh Start Media production and has been commissioned for Sky Kids by Lucy Murphy.

COP26: In Your Hands will air on Sky Kids and streaming service NOW on 18 October

About Sky

Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of Comcast Corporation. Across six countries, we connect our 23.4 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news, and arts including our own award-winning original content.

Our technology, including the market leading Sky Q, connects people to everything they love – with entertainment from Sky TV, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and BBC iPlayer, and apps like Spotify, YouTube, BBC Sounds, Highbrow, Peloton, Fiit, and more, in one place, easy. Our streaming service NOW brings viewers all the enjoyment of Sky with the flexibility of a contract-free service. Through our new B2B broadband provider, Sky Connect, we offer superfast broadband with business-grade 4G back-up to small businesses in the UK.

Building on the success of Sky Originals like Chernobyl, Gangs of London and Brassic, we are doubling our investment in original content by 2024 through Sky Studios. Sky News provides impartial and trustworthy journalism for free; Sky Arts is the UK’s only dedicated free-to-air arts channel making the arts accessible for everyone and Sky Sports, our leading sports broadcasting service, brings customers some of the biggest and best global sporting events from the Premier League to Formula 1 and everything in-between. Our new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, which will open in 2022, is expected to create over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in the UK over the first five years.

We believe that we can be a force for good in the communities in which we operate. We’re committed to being Europe’s first net zero carbon entertainment company by 2030 and we’re proud to be a Principal Partner and Media Partner of COP26. We take pride in our approach to diversity and inclusion: we’ve been recognised by The Times and Stonewall for our commitment to diversity, and we’ve set ambitious 2025 targets to continue to increase diversity and representation.  We’re also committed to investing £30million across our markets over three years to improve our approach to diversity and inclusion, and to tackle racial injustice.

About Fresh Start Media

Fresh Start Media is among the UK’s Top 150 Indies (Broadcast Magazine 2020). Our passion to make cutting edge, thought-provoking and entertaining factual television has led to commissions from major broadcasters. We also make factual programmes for major children’s and youth television networks including FYI: For Your Info – an award-winning weekly news show for Sky Kids presented by children for children. We produce current affairs and observational documentaries for YouTube, BBC, Eco Flix, and we specialise in educational content for Discovery Education and other online resources.

About The Young Audiences Content Fund

Managed by the BFI, the Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF) supports the creation of distinct, high-quality content for children and young audiences to be broadcast on free-to-access, Ofcom regulated television channels and online platforms.

Financed by the UK Government as part of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s Contestable Fund, the YACF aims to provide new avenues for creators of original content and bring new voices to the market, and back content which entertains, informs and reflects the experiences of young people growing up across the UK today.

About the BFI

We are a cultural charity, a National Lottery distributor, and the UK’s lead organisation for film and the moving image.

Our mission is:

  • To support creativity and actively seek out the next generation of UK storytellers
  • To grow and care for the BFI National Archive, the world’s largest film and television archive
  • To offer the widest range of UK and international moving image culture through our programmes and festivals - delivered online and in venue
  • To use our knowledge to educate and deepen public appreciation and understanding
  • To work with Government and industry to ensure the continued growth of the UK’s screen industries

Founded in 1933, the BFI is a registered charity governed by Royal Charter.

The BFI Board of Governors is chaired by Tim Richards.