Young Environmentalist Awards projects are…..
- action projects on an environmental issue
An action project is…
- a project which engages young people in taking some specific actions as a component of a personal development or educational project. It comprises self-directed and inter-disciplinary learning.
An environmental issue is…
- an environmental issue is an issue related to any part of our environment. It should be noted that environmental issues have environmental, social and political cause and effect.
The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme links with numerous areas within the formal education setting namely the:
- Primary and secondary education system in the Republic of Ireland
- Key Stage 3 & 4 in Northern Ireland
The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme links most directly with the Geography, Science, SPHE, CSPE, Maths and Art syllabi. In the Republic of Ireland, the programme can be easily integrated into the Transition Year programme as it can facilitate suitable cross-curricular learning experiences, support a personal education programme and encourage active and participatory citizenship. It is also recognised as a suitable CSPE action project connecting to several CSPE concepts including; Stewardship, Interdependence and Rights and Responsibility.
The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme is highly accessible to young people within second-chance education and Youthreach centres across Ireland and linked to several aspects of the Leaving Cert Applied and vocational programmes.
The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme shares the vision of youth work as detailed in the Youth Work Act 2001; where all young persons are empowered to develop the skills and confidence to fully participate as active citizens in an inclusive society.
ECO-UNESCO actively promotes education for sustainable development and the inclusion of its principals; experiential learning, holistic and interdisciplinary, locally relevant, values-driven, multi-method, participatory decision making, critical thinking and action orientated. ECO-UNESCO empowers young people to make decisions in favour of sustainable development.
Benefits of carrying out a Young Environmentalist Award project:
The emphasis in a Young Environmentalist Awards is the personal development of the learner or participant. The focus is on:
- individual learning
- working as part of a team to choose
- planning, investigating and implementing a project on the environment
Through the Young Environmentalist Awards, participants are provided with the opportunity to make a real difference to the quality of life of their own local community, as well as contributing to the future well being of the planet. Participants will soon begin to recognise their own abilities and develop new skills.
The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme facilitates an experiential and active environmental education learning experience where young people engage in a local environmental action project which will benefit themselves and their school, youth organisation and community. The Young Environmentalist Awards honours the actions of young people who protect, conserve and enhance our local and global environment.
"I have found the Young Environmentalist Awards to be an extremely rewarding medium for students to express their environmental interests.”
Katie Sullivan, Salerno Secondary School, Galway.
“The team have worked so hard on planning, preparing, and carrying out this campaign. I am so proud of each and every student and really see them as role models to the school. Their position in geography and the environment is outstanding. Well done.”
Roisin Collins, St. Patrick’s College, Knock.