The ECO Award

ECO-UNESCO’s ECO Centre and Organisation Award for organisations leading the way to a sustainable future

ECO-UNESCO’s new sustainability award- the ECO Award- is designed to assist youth organisations and community organisations wishing to contribute towards building a more sustainable future. The aim is to reward and celebrate youth organisations at each step along their journey towards sustainability. The programme consists of seven steps for organisations wishing to become more sustainable.

Why become a sustainable organisation?

In 1987, the Brundtland Commission defined sustainability as ‘meeting the needs of present generations without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs’. Sustainable development encompasses many different ideas but it is principally about addressing the needs of current and future generations through the creation of a society which is acceptable to all and which does not cause systematic irreparable damage to the environment.

Young people and youth organisations have a vital role in moving society towards a safer, more sustainable future. Young people are more affected by today’s decisions that the older generation who often make them. Young people’s participation in decision making about the environment, society and economics is vital to ensure our future is one that we will all want to live in.

Young people are often told about the ‘power of one’ and individual responses to the great challenges we face. But as part of their own communities, youth organisations and peer groups they can effect far greater changes and feel empowered to respond to these challenges on a scale that will be seen and used as a good example to the rest of society. The ECO Award is about building the skills that young people and supporting adults need to create sustainable organisations. It is also about celebrating and rewarding youth and community organisations who are already beginning to lead the way towards a more socially just and environmentally safe future for all.

How can my organisation get involved?

The ECO Awards programme is a new, exciting scheme, being launched at our Youth for Sustainable Development Conference on 22nd Sept 2010 and awarded at the annual Young Environmentalist Awards Ceremony in May 2011. ECO-UNESCO is seeking 3 key youth organisations to pilot the Awards from September 2010.

As part of the new awards pilot ECO-UNESCO will help youth organisations wishing to become more sustainable by providing a framework of seven steps to sustainability, a free one day training course, and on-going advice and support through the pilot.

For further information about the Awards please contact the Youth for Sustainable Development Programme Co-ordinator

Tel: +353 1 6625491
Email: ysd@ecounesco.ie