What are the Young Environmentalist Awards?

Since 1999, ECO-UNESCO has run the YEA programme to honour the work of young people to protect, conserve and enhance the environment through local environmental projects, making a difference to their lives and the lives of others both locally and globally. Over 65,000 young people have taken part in the YEA since it began, bringing about lasting change to the environment, and reaching countless others with awareness-raising campaigns in schools and communities throughout Ireland.

The YEA programme is a fun and exciting way to empower young people to become better citizens, to build awareness of environmental issues in the community and promote local actions and lifestyle changes to the environment. 


Who can enter?​

YEA is open to any group (2-25 members) of young people aged 10-18 years in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

There are three age categories:

Super Junior Group: 10-12 years

Junior Group: 12-14 years

Senior Group: 15-18 years

How do the awards work?

Stage 1 Registration (August – November): Interested groups register online here. See below for award categories.
Stage 2 Action Project (August – November): Groups begin to work on their projects, with support from the YEA 6-Steps to Success Manual, online training, workshops and other resources.
Stage 3 Project Submission (February): Groups submit their ECO-Action project for adjudication.
Stage 4 Semi-Final ECO-Dens (March/April): Shortlisted projects are invited to pitch their project to a panel of expert judges. These are held in regional hubs across Ireland.
Stage 5 YEA Showcase & Awards Ceremony (May): Finalists showcase their projects and winners are announced at the YEA Showcase and Awards Ceremony.

What are the awards categories?

YEA can choose from 11 of the below award categories which are aligned to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)*. Check out last year’s finalist projects for ideas here.

*Super Junior Projects are not award category specific. 

Contact us:

If you require more information, do not hesitate to contact the YEA team