During October 9 - 10 2013, the city of Sarny in Rivne region of Ukraine hosted the All-Ukrainian Environmental Forum «Children for Environment: The Future We Want!", supported by the GEF SGP Project "Ecological education of youth as a method to combat climate change". The Forum was organised by the Children NGO "Environmental Club "Sprout" and other public organizations from the GEF SGP Non-governmental network in Ukraine. The Forum gathered more than 100 school students, 50 school teachers and university lectures from more than 25 educational facilities and 10 regions of Ukraine: Rivne, Zhytomyr, Volyn, Lugansk, Donetsk, Poltava, Zaporizhya, Kirovohrad, Kyiv and Sumy.
Forum's discussion "Environmental Education for Sustainable Development" shared experiences on best environmental educational practices and initiated a platform for identification of key areas of children's environmental education. A forum Resolution will be communicated to Ministry of Education and Science and Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources. The resolution will be shared with Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.
The students were enthusiastic about Forum's environmental educational program. Classes on origami and "From Unnecessary to Useful" taught children to make flowerpots from recycled materials. While classes in sports and tourism provided the basic knowledge on eco-tourism, river crossing, tend pitching, practical uses of compass, and camp fire kindeling. Other classes on "Medicinal Plants" and "Ukrainian amulet" equipted students with deeper knowledge on the flora of their native land and provided practical lessons on how to prepare herbal tea blends of their choice. Very interesting for children was the class "Learning to operate meteorologic instruments and observing weather conditions", that enabled them to operate meteorologic instruments, record observations, and analyze meteorological data.
The winner of the UNEP 22nd International Drawing Competition on environmental protection in the European region, Eugenia Zakharchuk and her leader held ecological class "Drawing Our Future", than taught children to use their creativity on preparing eco-souvenirs.
The environmental virtual game "Green Manager" developed as part of the GEF SGP Project "Creation of the Children's Environmental Centre" was tested during the Forum. The game teaches how to be a true master of one's native land, how to balance between the provision of goods and carbon emissions in order to preserve the planet for future generations. Green Manager provides "live guide" on practical implementation of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Other educational activites included extreme quest "Keys to the Center of the Rivne Polissya Area", children's eco-fashion show "Chance", flash mob "The Earth Trusts in Us!" and an environmental quiz "The best ecology expert".
More information about the Forum is availabe at: http://sarnyparostok.com.ua/ekologichni-novini.