Headshot Photo of Amelia Fortgang
2022 Award Recipient


Project Bay Area Youth Climate Summit (BAYCS)

Location San Francisco, CA

Issue Area Advocacy/Activism | Climate Justice/Environment

Motivated by the urgency of the climate crisis and inspired by both her grandmothers, Amelia founded the Bay Area Youth Climate Summit. The activist network is driven by the belief that climate change is a people problem, not just a planet problem. Summit leaders have lobbied elected officials to protect oceans, pass city legislation that includes climate change, and advocate for more affordable, environmentally-friendly housing. So far, the Bay Area Youth Climate Summit has engaged more than 3,000 youth through 55 workshops and three annual summits to learn about the impact they can have in addressing the climate crisis.

Dedicated to social justice, the Summit has also partnered with other local organizations, donating 500 items of clothing and $15,000 worth of sustainable hygiene kits to mutual aid projects in San Francisco, Oakland, and Marin, as well as facilitating seven drives to donate 1,250 books to the Children’s Book Project. Their most significant impact has come through the launch of detailed action plans to drive environmental change. These plans have resulted in new air quality sensors in San Bruno public schools, and advanced campaigns to install school solar panels, Terracycle bins in San Francisco, and a community garden in the south part of the city.

Repairing the world improves our environment, and improving our environment helps repair the world.

Amelia Fortgang
A group of teens wearing matching t-shirts holding up a Bay Area Youth Climate Summit banner.

Bay Area Youth Climate Summit (BAYCS)


The Bay Area Youth Climate Summit is building a sustained and powerful climate movement in the Bay Area. By forming a network of young climate activists, Amelia is cultivating leaders to take systemic steps that can change the world. The group educates, connects, and builds community, empowering members to achieve results through climate action plans. They are also mobilizing youth through hands-on, action-oriented campaigns, including phone banking, ecosystem restoration, and political advocacy.

Amelia speaking to a crowd of people with a microphone in her hand.
Bay Area Youth Climate Summit logo
Headshot Photo of Amelia Fortgang
Amelia standing on the sidewalk holding a poster under her arm.