We write and sing songs as a form of environmental activism and invite everyone to join us.
SOS from the Kids formed when brothers Sim(12) and Noah Macaulay(14) got together with their cousin, Coen Baines and close friends Louis Elsom(12), Eliza Dunnel(11)l and Rahel-Sofia Timossi(11) to record the song ‘SOS from the Kids’. The song had been written by Sim and his mum (Dorry) after Sim and Noah learnt about humankind’s destruction of nature at school. They came home telling their mum about the number of trees cut down per day, the state of the insects and the amount of energy and resources that are consumed to make a t-shirt. Watching Sir David Attenborough’s ‘Climate Change – The Facts’ alerted them to the crisis being caused by this destruction of nature. It had been Attenborough’s nature programmes that had first inspired their boyhood fascination with bugs and insects.
Sim had written songs with his mum since the age of seven so working on ‘SOS from the Kid’s’ with her was a very natural way to work through his feelings. The song started as a way to channel their family’s feelings of despondency about the crisis into something proactive, something hopeful that could include friends & family.
Sim, his cousin Coen and 3 other children first performed the song in July 2019 to politicians. They busked on the street outside the Winchester Council Chambers, attracting a crowd of MP’s and policy makers who were gathering to debate and vote on climate issues. The response was electric with politicians stopping to hear then, holding back tears and writing on their facebook and twitter profiles calling it ‘heart wrenching’ and a ‘powerful reminder’ that they have ‘no choice’ but to ‘act now’ for the next generation. Through YouTube, word spread fast and before long hundreds of kids joined the troupe to sing at September’s ‘Global Youth Strike for Climate’ at Parliament Square in London.
SOS from the Kids were delighted to have a global platform as Semi finalists on Britain’s Got Talent 2020. It was a nerve-wracking and exhilarating show to be involved with, but what they didn’t expect was the sheer amount of messages they’d receive from children all over the world. Children messaged saying that seeing them sing made them realise that they were not alone in their feelings about climate change. Children also wrote saying they felt encouraged and inspired to keep going with the things they had started doing to help the planet. In October 2020 SOS from the Kids released a charity single called ‘Can You Imagine’ for WWF UK which was part of WWF’s ‘Future Visions’ challenge.
There have been many wonderful moments for the group so far, but a huge personal highlight, for Sim and Noah in particular, was receiving a letter from their hero Sir David Attenborough. His letter said, ‘Thank you for all you are doing to help tackle the problem’. This will always be framed in pride of place in their home!
SOS from the Kids want to encourage other young people to feel empowered to join the global movement calling for environmental change. They have put free resources on their website so individuals, school groups and youth clubs anywhere can sing their songs.
They encourage people to give it a go! They have found singing to be an empowering way to express their feelings. This has helped channel their eco anxiety by giving them a way to be proactive. It’s also been an amazing way to meet like-minded people and make new friends. These things have helped them feel more hopeful about their future as they continue to campaign for the protection of nature and a greener future.