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Best practice - Kids & young people

Aktion Klima!

Klima Kiste is a toolbox sent out to German schools by BildungsCent in partnership with the Federal Environment Ministry, within the Aktion Klima! programme. The Klima Kiste contains awareness raising facts and figures on climate change, practical devices and games to make concrete measurements and activities. It is shipped to voluntary schools along with a 500 euro grant to spend on climate change activities. School garden kits were also sent out. Interestingly, the project was financed from the emission trade benefits. Communication around the project involved various media and actions (conferences, YouTube channel, members of parliament delivering the Klima Kisten to schools, manuals). (November 2011)

More information: Website
Contact: Silke Ramelow (BildungsCent e.V.)

Smart Solutions for the Environment

The "Smart solution for the Environment" competition was announced by the Ministry of the Environment together with the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic in November 2010. Its main objective was to find new young and talented students from secondary schools or universities, and reward them with monetary prizes (100,000 crowns, i.e. more than 4,000 euros ) so that they can put their thoughts and ideas into practice. Their projects had to be related to specific categories: Technologies for Water Treatment, Technologies for Emissions Reduction, Recycling of Material and Waste, and Development of New Analytical Procedures for Detecting Pollutants. (September 2011)

More information: Website

Energy Challenge for schools

Schools in Brussels have a very high energy consumption; heating represents 75% of their general energy consumption, followed by lighting (15%) and various electric devices (10%). The Brussels Institute for Environmental Management (IBGE) thus launched the "Energy Challenge for schools" initiative. Its purpose is to encourage and assist schools in the Brussels Region to reduce their energy consumption by informing them about good habits, cheaper energy, and simple adjustments that have a real impact on energy consumption without reducing comfort or requiring heavy investment. Educational tools are provided in an entertaining way to address the problem of energy with young people. The Energy Challenge is conceived to combine energy savings and education since today's children are tomorrow's responsible citizens. (September 2011)

More information: Website
Contact: IBGE

Junior City Farmer 2011

This year, the annual City Farming campaign focuses on young gardeners: the initiative aims to foster urban agriculture among children. A starting pack including small tomato plants is given to them for free, in order to “make cities green, not grey” and to let children experience what it is like to grow one’s own vegetables. An action week will take place at the Junior City Farmer Campus, where young gardeners display their works. It will be hosted by a teacher from the famous Schönbrunn horticulture school and a garden educationalist. (September 2011)

More information: Website

Lampertheim Energy Forum

The town of Lampertheim, Germany, set up the Energy and Environment Forum in 2005 for citizens to discuss and exchange information on various environmental issues such as energy efficiency, sustainable building and renewable energies. The main purpose is to involve citizens in projects linked to the protection of the environment, and ultimately to encourage them to improve their standard of living. This Forum organised by Lampertheim is based on the organisation of interactive conferences on topics related to the city’s environment, guided visits in HEQ (High Environmental Quality) certified buildings in construction, and awareness-raising campaigns in schools. The Forum was cost-efficient and succeeded in improving people’s behaviours towards the environment. (September 2011)

More information: Website

Better than New : 100 % Old, Spain

Carried out across the Barcelona Metropolitan Area, this broad waste prevention campaign intends to teach the public how to use objects until they truly meet their end. The project actively engages the community by organising repair workshops (held daily at a local shop), and its website provides information on: ways to repair and reuse objects such as clothes, bicycles, furniture, and other household items, where to find secondhand shops or other online exchange-shops, and blogs for people looking to repair their own items. A part of the campaign is exclusively directed at encouraging children to reuse and prevent waste by helping schools organise “markets” of exchange as well as workshops on how to generate less waste. The "Better than New: 100% Old" campaign, ultimately seeks to pioneer a new philosophy of reuse and waste management to the general public. (May 2011)

More information: Website in Catalan

Food Waste Reduction Challenge - St Mary's Episcopal Primary School, UK

St. Mary's Episcopal Primary School (Scotland, UK) launched a project to raise awareness about waste management. The project has two phases and uses waste generated from lunches served at the school canteen and packed lunches brought from home. During the first stage, the school organised a one-week event in which kids collected and weighed waste at the end of every lunchtime so they could learn about food and packaging waste. A few weeks later, in the second phase, children were advised on how to reduce waste in their packed lunch through more responsible purchasing, planning, and storing, as well as reusing plastic containers and bottles. (May 2011)

More information: Website

Young Reporters for the Environment

The Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) is a network of teachers and pupils present in 17 countries. The participants launch investigation projects, which always aim to communicate relevant environmental information to their local community via their choice of media. There are 6 main investigation topics: agriculture, cities, coastline, energy, waste, and water. At the international level, students are able to communicate and exchange with their counterparts from different countries. The YRE teams are helped in their work by 17 national coordinators and by the YRE website, which proposes a large number of activities, tools, and services. In 2008, more than 500 investigation groups carried out YRE activities. (May 2011)

More information: Website
Contact: Boris Susmak

Waste Watch interactive theatre shows, UK

Waste Watch is a British charity that works towards the reduction of waste. It offers two 45-minute theatre shows for children in line with the national curriculum, involving the audience in an interactive way. "Recycler" introduces a recycling robot who teaches pupils how to improve recycling and reuse. "Gordon le Rotter" plays a French chef who raises awareness about food waste. Both characters make the connection between everyday life and objects, the scarcity of resources, and the importance of protecting the environment. (May 2011)

More information: Website
Contact: Waste Watch

Go Green Week, People & Planet, UK

People & Planet was founded more than 40 years ago as Third World First. It is a student network that works on world poverty, human rights and environmental issues. Every year, the network organises a Go Green Week as a national week of action on climate change in schools, colleges and universities. Students launch awareness-raising activities and Going Greener projects. Since the date of the 2011 week was close to Valentine's Day, the theme was, "Love your Future, Love your Climate". (May 2011)

More information: Website

Discover Birds at School, RSPB, UK

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) provides web pages and a dedicated booklet to help staff to use school grounds to teach children about nature and to prepare the school grounds to welcome wildlife. Numerous games and activities are provided, such as making an insect hotel, a wildlife-friendly garden, or a bird cake. The RSPB also partnered with the BBC for the BBC Breathing Spaces Schools, which aimed to encourage schools to welcome nature in their grounds, involving more than 11,000 schools throughout the UK. (May 2011)

More information: Website, Website
Contact: RSPB

Keep your soul unpolluted, Poland

This provocative campaign was based on the fact that 90% of the Polish population declare Catholicism as their faith. The Ministry of the Environment therefore decided to link being a good Catholic with being environmentally-friendly. It focused in particular on waste, which is a big issue in Poland. The main target groups were women and youth from villages and small towns, because religion had the greatest impact on these particular populations. The goal was to make people aware of the impact of illegal dumping and waste burning; the message used was not to commit “ecological sins”. Media tools included: television (with a spot of a priest who explained how to collect and dispose of waste properly), radio, print press (including a quote from John-Paul II), and the Internet. A competition for children was also set up: it consisted of creating an educational film or a comic strip, and to create a mascot toy out of waste materials. (March 2011)

More information: Website

National postcard initiative on biodiversity, Sweden

On June 5 (the International Day of the Environment), the Ministry of the Environment launched a campaign to raise awareness on local biodiversity and endangered species. The Minister sent postcards to local municipalities, featuring the threatened species in each particular region. The postcard came with an appeal to take action in order to protect these species. Local media and NGOs were alerted in order to put pressure on politicians through setting up stands during events, posters, etc. Schools and preschools were also targeted by the dissemination of a calendar which gives practical exercises and tips on biodiversity. The aim was to stress that it was crucial to work on local conservation. The idea of this campaign was inspired by similar initiatives that had taken place in Norway and Denmark. (March 2011)

More information: Description

National litter-picking days, Sweden

Litter causes environmental, social, and economic problems. The Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation therefore decided to create an annual campaign to tackle this issue, engaging as many Swedes as possible on a limited budget. A national day was declared to be dedicated to litter-picking and raising awareness on waste. Direct mailing to schools and municipalities was the main promotional action for the project, encouraging these bodies to participate in the event. Posters about the campaign were sent along with the invitations, and Keep Sweden Tidy’s webpage was continuously updated with information concerning the campaign. Members of the media were also informed, with good coverage (300 media features). The campaign did not use many give-aways – to be consistent with the message – only a trash bag for litter-picking and temporary tattoos displaying the message of the campaign. (March 2011)

More information: Website

M ta Terre, France

ADEME, the French Environment Agency, set up a website for teenagers dedicated to environmental information and awareness-raising. Several pages explain facts about climate change and sustainable development; others provide tips and thematic information related to young peoples’ lives (sustainable mobility, holidays, parties, etc.). The website is attractive and visual, and uses an adapted language and means to convince young people to reduce their environmental impact. For instance, it provides a web radio and a web TV with specific tips to reduce one’s impacts, games, information on jobs related to the environment, and more, thus covering many interesting areas for youngsters.  (July 2010)

More information: Website
Contact: M ta Terre


This website was set up by the Mobilise Energy Awareness action, which is supported by the Intelligent Energy Europe programme (this programme is part of the EU Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme, CIP). EnergyXchange presents awareness-raising material on different environmental topics, created by people from the private and public sectors. It also presents a student scheme, Student Power, which helps students work within their communities on energy awareness campaigns. (July 2010)

More information: Website

Tomorrow’s world competition, UK
This film competition was organised by the UK Environment Agency. Designed by students, for students, the films aimed at communicating to the leaders of tomorrow on climate change and flooding. More than 70 projects entered the competition, and a dedicated website was created to broadcast the two winning films. (February 2010)
More information: Description, Website

Change and Kids4Change, Ireland
Ask about Ireland, a website, gathers a range of unusual and interesting resources from libraries and museums across the country. The Change section offers a panoply of resources and learning tools about climate change and the environment. Kids 4 Change is a learning section for children (divided into specific parts for primary and secondary students) with characters with which the children can identify, facilitating learning and play activities around environmental issues. (February 2010)
More information: Website, Website

CO2nnect : CO2 on the way to school
This campaign was launched by the SUPPORT Programme to improve education for Sustainable Development. The programme provides a web based application and teaching materials in 14 languages. The materials are adaptable to several age groups. A CO2nnect competition is organised for schools to present their projects and initiatives. (February 2010)
More information: Website
Contact: Co2nnect

Learning and Teaching Scotland: Climate Change

Learning and Teaching Scotland is a government agency working to improve the academic curriculum and to help implement education reforms. It created a Climate Change website, which provides material and information to explain climate change issues. In particular, the ‘Communicate’ section of the website offers a selection of interesting material and awareness-raising resources, such as DVDs, books, image gallery, etc. (September 2009)

More information: Website

Fairy-tale writing competition and biodiversity weekend, Hungary
For the International Day for Biological Diversity (22 May), the Ministry of Environment and Water organized a 3-day biodiversity weekend in 2009. The International Biodiversity Day was celebrated in the form of a Parliamentary Open Day focusing on agro-biodiversity, namely the conservation of local varieties and diversity of national crop as well as livestock genetic resources. All relevant stakeholders participated in the event, including high-level representatives from the state administration as well as Members of Parliament, scientific and research institutions and NGOs. The main event of the biodiversity weekend was the award ceremony of the nation-wide fairy-tale writing competition entitled ‘Are there still any sky-high bean stalks at your village’? Children and adults were invited to write a tale or a short story related to crop, vegetable or fruit varieties. The best stories were selected for a two-volume fairy-tale book officially launched that day. (July 2009)
More information: Description, Website

Muck In4Life campaign, United Kingdom
Muck In4Life is a campaign which aims to enhance biodiversity by increasing the number and diversity of citizens involved in conservation volunteering. The campaign also increases the public’s awareness of the physical and mental health benefits from being active outdoors, whether in urban green spaces or the natural environment. Through the campaign, families and community based groups were encouraged to undertake a range of outdoor volunteering activities to protect precious wildlife (from monitoring species to scrub and path clearing and creating habitats). Muck In4Life conservation volunteering opportunities are the perfect way to entertain children with free, fun activities during the school summer holidays. Communication activities will be particularly focused during the summer months of 2009 to take advantage of this. The campaign runs throughout England with particular focus on five regions with a high index of the campaign target audience. (July 2009)
More information: Description, Website

Information about the Kids’ Page and the Blue Danube Book Interactive CD ROM – an online water educational tool for children, Romania
The Blue Danube Book Interactive CD ROM is a permanent education tool, available on the Kids’ Page of the website of the Romanian Ministry of Environment. This interactive tool is a part of a pilot project called "The Blue Danube Book", which was implemented in 22 schools along the Romanian Danube. The project has the objective to help children understand the river basin and its entire diversity and to feel integrated in its ecosystem. (July 2009)
More information: Website

Don Cato, Germany
The Don Catos “Green Stories” competition took place between 1 October 2008 and 5 February 2009, addressing to 3-12 years old children. The main objectives were to raise awareness on environmental and nature conservation issues. In “Green Stories” (“Grüne Geschichten”), the DON CATO story formed the starting point for the competition. The “Green Stories” competition is developed around a story where a lynx called Don Cato brings aliens to Earth and tries to demonstrate to them the importance of biodiversity. The lynx engages children in his efforts, whose stories and drawings help to illustrate the issue. To support the initiative, brochures, posters and internet were used, as well as advertising via print media and radio. (July 2009)
More information: Description, Website

“Eco Agents”, Become an undercover agent and defend the environment! EEA
Children from 9 to 14 can now learn about ways to protect the environment, while chasing eco-villains on the European Environment Agency's “Eco Agents” website, available in 24 languages.
In each story, five heroes from different countries are assigned to a special mission, such as infiltrating a 'wind farm' in the Netherlands, which is a cover-up for a natural gas extraction facility. Each mission includes games where children earn points towards a general score. Each storyline has a corresponding quiz. Correct answers provide feedback and further information on that particular issue, whereas incorrect answers first provide a hint and then invite the player to try again. The quizzes can also be downloaded and used in classrooms. (February 2009)
More information: Website

Naturdetektive – a nature observation project, Germany
Over a decade, "Naturdetektive" has developed into a youth/public multimedia nature observation project and supports the awareness raising on the UN Convention on Biological Diversity in Germany. It links web-based information, e-Learning tools and reporting facilities with practical field work. (November 2008)
Read more: Description, website, brochure in German

Let's look around in our neighbourhood!, Hungary
This nationwide initiative aiming to raise public awareness about the importance of traditional local fruit, crop and vegetables. In the  competition entitled 'Let's look around in our neighbourhood!' students have been asked to note down what kind of traditional crop, fruit and vegetable varieties can still be found in the kitchen gardens of their own or their grandparents’ village/town. The students interviewed the owners and growers of the traditional and local varieties, they took photos of the plant specimens, and they collected and tasted the fruits. Prizes were presented to the winners at an award ceremony and a whole-day guided tour was organized for the 'gold-medal' teams at the Balaton-Upland National Park. (November 2008)
Read more: Description

CITES - "Wildlife Inspector in Action"
The CITES Management Authority initiated a campaign with WWF Hungary and Oracle Hungary in order to raise awareness among children in schools. The children were invited for a country-wide tender called ’Wildlife Inspector in Action’ where their task was to search for endangered, CITES-listed species in their surroundings (pet shops, zoos etc.), and afterwards create their own web pages to display their results. (November 2008)

Adopt a River – a national programme on the importance of rivers, Poland
“Adopt a River” is a national programme for ecological education with particular focus on rivers and their importance. It is based on local community activities - with particular focus on children and youth - and cooperation with local governments, public administration, NGOs and private companies. The programme is aimed at all types of educational institutions as well as institutions and organisations interested in water management and conservation. In 2006, several thousand people took part in the programme. (November 2008)
Read more: Description
Contact: Klub Gaja, ecological and cultural NGO

"Bin Fairy" - Board game teaching recycling to young children
The purpose of this game is to develop awareness on recycling as early as possible through interesting, funny while demanding activities. The set contains a three-level graded task system fitting the requirements of different age groups (January 2007).
Read more: Game description

Kid's Corner  - Website for Romanian children about the environment
In Romania, the Ministry of Environment and Water Management has created a special section for children on its web site. The idea is to get children involved by educating them, knowing that children are efficient multipliers of environmental messages. There is, for instance, an encyclopaedia on animal life in the Black Sea and a variety of brochures. (May 2006)

Polish website educating children about the environment
This interactive website in Polish aims to encourage environment-friendly behaviour among children. A talking rabbit acts as the children's guide through the site which includes interactive games, puzzles, quizzes, e-cards, tips on environmental protection as well as publications for children and teachers. (May 2006)

CLARITY - Climate action reaching and teaching the young
Project aiming to raise awareness and create understanding about the basic dynamics of climate change, particularly among young people. It produced a CD-Rom in six language versions to serve as a tool for producing local climate exhibitions. (March 2005)
Read more: Website

last update: 03/05/2012