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ECO-UNESCO Ireland’s Environmental Education and Youth Organisation


Annual Report 2010


ECO-UNESCO is affiliated to the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs, Centres and Associations



Contents Welcome About ECO-UNESCO

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I am delighted to present to you our Annual Report outlining the developments and achievements of 2010.

Events & Activities Workshops National Youth ECO-Forum ECO-Youth Clubs

ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 8 Education & Training Programmes ECO-UNESCO: FETAC Accredited Centre

Youth for Sustainable Development programme

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ECO-Choices Programme 13 ECO-UNESCO in Northern Ireland




Representation & Advocacy


ECO-UNESCO International


Collaborative Working



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Where We Work

ECO-UNESCO is Dear friends of ECO-UNESCO,

About ECO-Unesco in numbers

Environmental Youth Programmes



ECO-UNESCO is Ireland’s environmental education and youth organization. ECO-UNESCO works to educate, raise awareness and develop young people through environmental youth programmes, activities, education and training programmes and publications.

2010 has been an exciting and pivotal time in the history of ECO-UNESCO, as we made the move to our new flagship premises on St Andrew Street, Dublin 2 and established The Greenhouse as a dedicated centre of excellence in sustainable education, leadership and livelihood generation; and created an arena for showcasing the key role of education in achieving sustainability and the role young people can play in environmental protection. ECO-UNESCO has consistently led the way as a dynamic, creative and innovative environmental education and youth organisation. In 2010, we yet again provided opportunities for participation to over 10,000 young people; helping young people gain knowledge, skills, attitudes and values to help create a more sustainable world and empowering and developing young people’s interests and providing them with a voice. In 2010 we continued to offer our unique range of youth programmes and services, while also diversifying our offerings in order to reach a wider range of young people than ever before. We ran the National Youth ECO-Forum on biodiversity; developed a new Green Trail of Dublin; supported thousands of young people to develop Young Environmentalist projects; upskilled hundreds of young people as peer educators and youth leaders and provided a packed calendar of engaging hands-on events throughout the year for young people to get involved in, learn about the environment and above all have fun. Just one success story of many in 2010 is our Youth for Sustainable Development programme which grew from strength to strength in 2010, empowering more young people than ever before to return to their communities as peer educators, raising awareness about and involving people in the issues around Sustainable Development.

Over the past number of years ECO-UNESCO has become the organisation of choice for young people, community and youth workers, teachers and leaders seeking continuous professional development in the areas of environmental education, sustainability and youth work. In 2010, our FETAC accredited education centre built on this through the provision of trainings to thousands of participants both in The Greenhouse and nationwide on an outreach basis. An increased focus on consultancy work in 2010 also saw a number of semi-state and private sector organisations benefit from tailored ECO-UNESCO programmes, helping them on the path toward sustainability. Into the future, we will continue to be innovative in responding to environmental concerns, as well as the challenges of the economic climate in 2011. We aim to build on our many successes of 2010 by consolidating ECO-UNESCO’s position as Ireland’s leading environmental education and youth organisation, providing outstanding programmes for young people, leaders and teachers and – above all - empowering young people throughout Ireland to take environmental action and make a difference among their peers, in their communities and beyond. I know you will enjoy reading more about these initiatives and the great work that ECO-UNESCO has been involved in this year. Thank you for your continued interest and support.

Regards, Elaine Nevin National Director

12,000 young people, teachers and leaders participating in ECO-UNESCO events, activities and trainings 2,000+ attendees at the Young Environmentalist Awards 600 passionate and talented young people selected to exhibit at the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Showcase and Ceremony

120 young people learning about the environment during the Phoenix Park Summer Programme 19 counties

80 young people challenging the experts at the National Youth ECO-Forum 70 Youth for Sustainable Development Peer Educators 60 environmental education workshops for young people 50 shortlisted Young Environmentalist Awards Projects from 30 counties

22 Environmental action days with young people all over Ireland 1 environmental education and youth organisation

ECO-UNESCO’s aims are to: • • • •

Raise awareness, understanding and knowledge of the environment among young people; Promote the protection and conservation of the environment Promote the personal development of young people through practical environmental projects and activities. Promote the ideals of UNESCO

Protecting the Environment ECO-UNESCO works with young people, teachers and youth leaders on environmental projects across Ireland, helping to protect and conserve the environment. Each year our programmes, workshops and activities ECO-UNESCO support and inspire environmental action at a local level among young people, their peer groups, their communities and beyond. In 2010, ECO-UNESCO’s environmental work included: • ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme • Workshops delivered to primary schools, secondary schools and youth groups throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland • Environmental Youth Programme Events and Activities • Outdoor events and on key environmental days • Interactive exhibitions highlighting the work that young people are doing in the area of environmental protection and conservation • Development of environmental education resources and conservation • Projects funded by the Environmental Partnership Fund • Monthly Green Kids drop-in workshops • Summer and Hallowe’en Camps

Empowering Young People Through our innovative peer education programmes and youth-led events, ECO-UNESCO continuously strives to better achieve our mission of using environmental education as a means of empowering young people and supporting positive personal development. In 2010, ECO-UNESCO’s youth work included:: • ECO-Youth Choices Peer Education Programme


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Youth for Sustainable Development Peer Education Programme Trainings for Teachers and Youth Leaders National Youth ECO-Forum Young Environmentalist Awards ECO-UNESCO Clubs

Our Link to UNESCO ECO-UNESCO is affiliated to the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs, Centres and Associations (WFUCA). The UNESCO Clubs movement started in Japan in 1947 with the aim of providing a means for individuals to become involved in promoting the goals of UNESCO - cooperation and collaboration for peace. Founded in 1981, WFUCA is responsible for informing, coordinating and mobilising its members with UNESCO’s support and cooperation. ECO-UNESCO is the WFUCA affiliate in Ireland and supports and coordinates an all-island network of over 120 clubs.

Acknowledgements ECO-UNESCO would like to thank all those who contributed to the development of the organisation in 2010—especially all of our hardworking volunteers, interns, members and funders. Board Members: Liz Carroll, Anne Marie Kilshaw, Mark Bennett, Peter Byrne National Director: Elaine Nevin Staff: Armin Krautgasser, Daniel Meister, Jerrieann Sullivan, Hedda Dick, Ewa Marszalowska, Dharsh Pillay, Sandy McGroarty, Brian Costelloe, Laura Cahill, Colin O’Byrne Interns: Julie Prenderville, Maria Wolf, Julia Sedlaczek, Aine Bird, Tony Moran, Eoin Connolly, Emma Cleverley, Amy O’Loughlin , Angela Casas Diez, Roya Miller, Tatsiana Yavid Members & Participants: Our membership programme continued to grow in 2010 as young people, adults and youth groups joined ECO-UNESCO to help support the vision of the organisation. ECO-UNESCO Members benefit from special events and discounts on resources, trainings and workshops. We look forward to building our membership programme in 2011.



Minister for Environment, Heritage and local Government John Gormley with Elaine Nevin, National Director ECO-UNESCO and Ben Whelan of Cultivate at the launch of The Greenhouse.

Facilities AT THE greenhouse Ground Floor • Exhibition Space • Information and exhibition points for Cultivate and ECO-UNESCO • IEN members information


The Greenhouse

Environmental Youth Programmes

In 2010, ECO-UNESCO moved premises and established The Greenhouse as the organisation’s headquarters and a hub for environmental and youth activity. The Greenhouse serves as multi purpose venue for a vast range of activities including:

In 2010 ECO-UNESCO increased our delivery of environmental youth programmes, reaching out to more young people than ever before, empowering them to protect and conserve the environment. The environmental events and activities programme, the workshops programme, and the ECO-UNESCO National Youth ECO-Forum all grew from strength to strength, while a number of new developments including environmental holiday camps for children, drop-in Green workshops at The Greenhouse, and a biodiversity trail of the city helped ECO-UNESCO reach new groups of young people.

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Educational events, trainings, workshops children’s and youth programmes Information and exhibitions on environmental, sustainability and related issues. Space for synergies between Environmental NGOs, government, children, young people, adults and green business Events facilities including conference and meeting rooms, lecture space and exhibition space

The Greenhouse is a joint initiative of ECO-UNESCO and Cultivate providing a dedicated centre of excellence in sustainable learning, leadership and livelihood generation. This flagship centre provides an opportunity to showcase the key role of education in achieving sustainability and the role young people can play in environmental protection. Much has been achieved since The Greenhouse opened in December 2009 providing a high quality, useful and popular service to the more than 60,000 visitors that came through its doors in 2010 for information, events, trainings, exhibitions, conferences and much more.

Environmental Events and Activities programme ECO-UNESCO organised a range of environmental events and activities in 2010 aimed at getting young people out to learn about their environment in a fun, hands-on way. Based around key environmental days, the ever popular event series brought young people from across Ireland together for conservation, education and adventure. 2010 highlights of ECO-UNESCO’s Environmental Youth Programme included: National Tree Week Urban Safari 50 young people took part in an event for National Tree Week, exploring the role of trees in the built environment and taking a Green Trail of Dublin city

Biodiversity Week At the Biozone at this year’s ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Showcase over 500 young people took part in interactive quizzes, sensory displays, games and DIY investigations of the natural environment amongst other activities to celebrate Biodiversity Week.

2nd Floor • Meeting Room (facilitates up to 30 people) • Cultivate Offices

Mobility Week and Car Free Day 90 young people came together for a safe cycling and transport event to celebrate Mobility Week and Car Free Day.

3rd Floor • ECO-UNESCO Offices

Environmental Youth Programme events and actions also took place on UN World Environment Day, World Water Day, Biosphere Day, Stop Climate Chaos events, and at the ECO-UNESCO National Youth ECO-Forum.

Other Features • Wifi • Teleconferencing facilities

Workshops ECO-UNESCO carried out a range of workshop programmes during 2010 which included its ECO-Watchers, ECO-Action and ECO-Discovery series. In 2010 ECO-UNESCO ran an exciting range of programmes, events and more in The Greenhouse, including: • • • •

The Greenhouse is open to the public. Drop in to The Greenhouse at St. Andrew St., Dublin 2 For details on bookings or events spaces contact ECO-UNESCO: e. t. +353 1 662 5491


On the right track! Young ECO-Forum participants on a Green trail of Dublin city.

UN Earth Day Over 60 young people and a team of ECO-UNESCO Peer Educators gathered for a short-film screening and international food festival to celebrate diversity on Earth Day.

1st Floor • Event Space (facilitates up to 90 people)

Get Involved!

Waiting with baited breath! Young ECO-Explorers crowd round to get a glimpse of a minibeast.

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• • • • •

A programme of Summer and Halloween Camps called ECO-Explorers for Children FETAC Level 5 Introduction to Sustainable Development Courses FETAC Level 3 Community Development Courses A range of short courses on environmental education and ESD; Waste, Energy and Biodiversity; Youth work and sustainability, Peer education and sustainability. New Advanced Short courses on Leadership and strategic Sustainable Development. A peer education and training programme for teenagers which raised awareness on sustainable development, how to carry out action projects and how teenagers can engage with their peers on environmental issues. A new ECO-Sustainability Award programme and training for youth and community organisations Exhibitions showcasing environmental protection and sustainability in action from around the world The Green Kids Environmental workshop programme A Green Trail of Dublin City, starting at The Greenhouse And many more information nights, events, exhibitions, and conferences.

In 2010, ECO-UNESCO delivered over 60 workshops to young people all over Ireland. Young people participated in interactive activities on topics including energy, waste, water, climate change, creative recycling and more. These workshops were delivered on request in schools, VECs, Youthreach Centres and youth organisations; in conjunction with Local Authorities through the Environmental Partnership Fund (EPF), with the OPW and also as part of Catholic Youth Care summer projects, county library programmes and a range of community groups. A new outdoor workshop series Wild-Watchers was also developed in 2010. Wild-Watchers encourages young people to interact with their local environment through hands on outdoor activities.

Phoenix Park Summer Programme – Discovery in the Park In July 2010, ECO-UNESCO delivered its tailored programme ‘Discovery in the Park’ for a third year running, in conjunction with the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre and the OPW. This consisted of a series of full-day workshops and adventure trails around the park delivered to over 160 young people aged 4-12. Each week covered a different theme including Trees and Flowers of the Park; Creative Recycling; Deer and Animals of the Park and Discover the Heritage of the Park. The children also engaged in a range of exciting hands-on activities including seed planting, t-shirt painting and creative recycling arts and crafts as part of the programme.

Young people exploring biodiversity at the National Youth ECO-Forum

ECO-UNESCO carried out workshops from its ECO-Watchers programme including: Energy Watchers examines our energy consumption. It helps participants investigate their personal energy usage and explores new ways we can address the energy challenge. Waste Watchers focuses on developing an understanding of waste and consumption. Young people learn how to address the issue by adopting practical, sustainable solutions to their daily routines. Climate Watchers puts

Climate Change into context by exploring local and global issues. Young people learn how to take action at a local level and how to reduce their carbon footprint.

Wild Watchers examines

local biodiversity and ecology. It encourages young people to interact with and learn about their local environment through hands on outdoor activities.




Environmental Youth Programmes New Developments in 2010 ECO-UNESCO expanded its range of youth programmes in 2010, developing environmental holiday camps for children, drop-in Green workshops, and a biodiversity trail of Dublin city.

ECO-Explorers: Environmental Holiday Camps for Children ECO-UNESCO launched Dublin city centre’s first environmental holiday camps ‘ECO-Explorers’ in 2010. The camps took place during the summer and Halloween holiday periods and were a resounding hit with all the children who took part. Using ECO-UNESCO’s environmental hub The Greenhouse as a base, children explored nature in the heart of the city and the world around them through outdoor adventures, interactive games, handson activities and much more! Taking a city centre safari and treasure trail, building a bug hotel, starting a sunflower race and even launching an ECO-Rocket are some of the activities children enjoyed while learning about their environment and nature and having lots of fun!

Green Kids @ The Greenhouse On the second Saturday of each month in 2010, ECO-UNESCO provided a morning and afternoon workshop for children, at The Greenhouse, giving them the opportunity to get active and involved in fun environmental workshops which included creating waste islands, making recycled paper, creating bird feeders, designing ECO-bags and much more.

Green Trails & Map ECO-UNESCO developed an interactive, guided Green Trail and Map of Dublin which allows users to discover and explore the biodiversity hotspots, urban ecology and natural heritage of the city centre through a walking trail of the city. This Green Trail and Map was piloted at the National Youth ECO Forum 2010 with over 70 young people. The Green Trails were subsequently delivered to schools and youth groups on demand and is currently available to groups on request.

ECO-UNESCO National Youth ECO-Forum On Wednesday 24th November, ECO-UNESCO’s National Youth ECO-Forum 2010: World Wild Web - Young People Exploring Biodiversity brought over 70 young people aged 15 to 18, from across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, together in The Greenhouse to speak directly to the experts, take a biodiversity trail, and create and present their own Biodiversity Action Plans.

World wild Web-Young People Exploring Biodiversity ECO-UNESCO’s National Youth ECO-Forum 2010: World Wild Web - Young People Exploring Biodiversity was an opportunity for young people to plan actions on biodiversity as part of ECO-UNESCO’s activities for the UN International Year of Biodiversity. Through an innovative speed-networking format, participants gained access to key decision-makers from the fields of science, education, policy and the media - and made their voice heard on one of the most critical issues around biodiversity. They developed Biodiversity Action Plans which were presented and brought back to their communities to address Biodiversity issues at the local level.

Eco-Unesco Clubs programme ECO-UNESCO Clubs are groups of young people aged 12 to 18 who are in an existing Club or come together to form a club and affiliate to ECO-UNESCO due to a shared interest in taking environmental action at a local level. ECO-UNESCO supports and promotes the work of these ECO-UNESCO Clubs in Ireland and Northern Ireland through the ECO-UNESCO Clubs Programme. Following its relaunch in 2009, the ECO-UNESCO Clubs programme saw a dramatic increase in participation and reach in 2010, with over 100 new clubs in Ireland and Northern Ireland becoming part of the ECO-UNESCO Clubs network.

Developments in 2010 There were a number of significant developments in the ECO-UNESCO Clubs programme in 2010. Toyota Ireland continued to support the programme through the provision of an ECO-Friendly Toyota Prius for the organisation. Also, a new category was introduced to the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010: the Toyota ECO-UNESCO Club of the Year Award. This included a development fund for ECO-UNESCO Clubs to assist with their work. Another major development was the ECO-UNESCO Clubs in Action programme supported by Toyota and Toyota Europe.

Recycled Runway! One ECO-UNESCO Club gave a novel display of what you can do with all that waste, organising an ECO-Fashion Show at the ECOUNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Ceremony

ECO-UNESCO Clubs in Action, supported by Toyota In 2010, ECO-UNESCO, in partnership with Toyota Ireland, offered ECO-UNESCO Clubs across Ireland the opportunity to access Seed Grants of up to €1,000 to carry out an environmental activity and link in with their local Toyota dealerships. The 20 most innovative proposals were selected. They covered areas as diverse as Energy Saving; Recycling; ECO-Transport; Local Clean-Ups; Tree-Planting; Community Gardens and much more, and demonstrated how they could make a real difference to the community at a local level.

CASE STUDY: ECO-UNESCO CLUBS There are hundreds of ECO-UNESCO Clubs all over Ireland taking action in a whole range of ways. Here are just some ideas to get you started… The Greenhouse Gig was an awareness raising extravaganza of music and recycled fashion run by an ECO-UNESCO Club and hosted at The Greenhouse (ECO-UNESCO’s headquarters on St Andrew Street). “A very big task we undertook was planning our Action Project. We decided to hold an ECO-Gig which would promote issues of sustainable development to our peers, with bands and a themed fashion show. The night was a huge success.” Said ECO-UNESCO Club Member Ailbhe Kelly. Other projects from ECO-UNESCO Clubs around Ireland include coastal clean-ups, picnics in the park, cycling campaigns and much more…

Life, Camera…Action! ECO-UNESCO Youth Exhibition on Biodiversity In the build up to the National Youth ECO-Forum, throughout the summer of 2010, ECO-UNESCO ran a film and photo competition as part of our celebrations for the UN International Year of Biodiversity. The best images and films of biodiversity submitted by young people around Ireland were displayed in a multi-media exhibition Life, Camera… Action! The exhibition was filled with fascinating facts and figures about Biodiversity in Ireland and around the globe, and was a real visual treat too. Life, Camera, Action! was on public display in the ground floor of The Greenhouse, and at the IEN Showcase at the European Representation offices in Dublin, where visiting young people took part in the interactive trail accompanying the exhibition.





Young Environmentalist Awards

Young Environmentalist Awards

Ireland’s biggest celebration of young people taking ECO-Action!

The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010 was supported by:

Each year since its inception in 1999, thousands of young people have participated in ECO-UNESCO’s Young Environmentalist Awards programme, which recognises and rewards young people who raise environmental awareness and improve the environment through local action projects throughout the island of Ireland. The programme culminates every year in the prestigious ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Showcase and Awards Ceremony.

On the spot! MC Aidan Power of RTE quizzes a finalist at the ECOUNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards.

Showcase and Awards Ceremony – May 12th The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Showcase and Awards Ceremony 2010, held on 12th May, was one of the biggest yet. Over 500 young people from across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland were shortlisted to display 50 projects at the Mansion House in Dublin. Showcase The showcase 2010 was an awareness-raising extravaganza combining an exhibition area and dynamic interactive ECO-Zones - including a biodiversity sensory Garden, Creation Stations, an ECO-treasure trail and an ECO-Factor song contest. This created a fun carnival atmosphere for all young people involved, whilst also providing the perfect platform for them to showcase their innovative projects to the public and an expert judging panel. Awards Ceremony The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Ceremony 2010 was a high profile youth focused event, which included a keynote address from Ciaran Cuffe, Minister of State for Horticulture, Sustainable Travel, Planning and Heritage. Awards were presented in 15 categories by representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Transport, Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Environmental Education Forum Northern Ireland, the National Youth Council of Ireland, COMHAR Sustainable Development Council, Toyota Ireland and television personality Duncan Stewart. RTE’s Aidan Power was the master of ceremonies.

Guest of Honour Ciaran Cuffe, Minister of State for Horticulture, Sustainable Travel, Planning and Heritage gave an inspiring closing address at the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards.

CASE STUDIES Senior Overall Winners ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010 The Glen Youthreach, Co. Cork. Project Title: Our Community Garden This group wanted to develop local environmental awareness and further integrate with all age groups in the local community through the development of their school garden. They began by cleaning up an area of their grounds and building raised beds. They researched what vegetables they could grow and when, and brought local experts on board to get their garden growing. The group continued to maintain the garden and clean up of their school grounds throughout the year, and further raised awareness by organising open days for friends, families and local schools and community groups to see the great work they had done and to encourage more people to become involved in the future development of the garden.

Main Funders; Dept of Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Northern Irish Environment Agency, Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Supporters: Comhar, Deptartment of Transport, Environmental Protection Agency, Baglady Productions, Dublin City Council, Lord Mayor of Dublin, VitHitz Drinks, Toyota Ireland

“All of these projects are action basedyou are in a sense not just talking the talk of environmental awareness but you are walking the walk”Cllr Emer Costello, Lord Mayor of Dublin

The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards in numbers: 21,000+ young people,have particpated in the awards to date 1999 awards began in this year 1,500+ youth groups, schools & communities in Ireland & Northern Ireland involved to date

160 projects from all over Ireland and Northern Ireland in 2010 50 shortlisted groups invited to shortlist their projects in 2010 at the Mansion House, Dublin

15 categories ranging from Community Development to Climate Change, to Waste to Water and more

1 aim: empower, recognise and reward young people who take ECO-Action!

“Through the projects showcased here in Dublin today, the yea exemplifies original contributions from young people to the work that UNESCO has led since 2005 in the framework of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.” Walter Erelden, Assistant Director General for Natural Sciences of UNESCO.

“A good way to involve schools and children in recycling and the environment. Also a lot of fun!” Emma, participant, Glenlola Collegiate School, Down




Sharing knowledge. John Holden of Irish Times getting ideas from the group at an ECO-UNESCO Training day


Education and Training Programme

Education and Training Programme

ECO-UNESCO is Ireland’s leading provider of environmental, sustainability and youth training, providing personal and continuous professional development to a wide range of stakeholders including: young people, youth leaders, trainers within non-formal and formal education, community and business leaders, jobseekers, academics, professionals, teachers, those within public and private sector, the media, National and International NGOs, local authorities, and others with an interest in learning about sustainability.

developed and delivered were: • Sustainable Development • Environmental Education and Education for Sustainable Development (including Curriculum links) • ECO-Community Development • Strategic Sustainable Development • ECO-Tourism and Community based Tourism • Youth, Media and Sustainability

ECO-UNESCO provides both accredited and non-accredited training courses. In 2010, with the establishment of The Greenhouse as a training hub, in addition to training courses and learning space, ECO-UNESCO fro the first time offered an Alumni Network for advice, support and networking open to all past participants of our trainings, which has resulted in crosspollination of ideas and a number of collaborative projects between ECO-UNESCO Alumni.

“The training was relevant, well delivered and thought provoking.Helps to put environmental education into a professional format” Participant – Glenveigh National Park Education Team

Training and consultancy 2010 In 2010, over 140 trainings were delivered to more than 2200 participants on the following courses at The Greenhouse and through Outreach and Consultancy work.

Accredited trainings ECO-UNESCO offered two FETAC accredited Modules in 2010. Sustainable Development FETAC Level 5 (L22380) and Community Development FETAC Level 3 (NF2951). ECO-UNESCO delivered the Introduction to Sustainable Development course to over 170 participants throughout Ireland in the form of 10-week and intensive courses in The Greenhouse and tailored outreach courses throughout Ireland working in Youth Reach centres, and with jobseekers. The Community Development course was delivered to more than 25 participants. • Community Development FETAC Level 3 (NF2951) •

FETAC Centre ECO-UNESCO is an accredited FETAC centre, widely acknowledged as an expert training organisation in sustainability in Ireland, and operating under the qualities and standards set out by FETAC, the National Awarding Body. ECO-UNESCO offers accredited courses in the areas of sustainable development, environmental education and youth and community development. 48 Participants were awarded with their respective FETAC Sustainable Development Award in 2010. Progression Paths ECO-UNESCO’s Introduction to Sustainable Development (FETAC L22380) and ECO-UNESCO’s ECO-Community Development (FETAC Level 3 L3nF2951) can be used as foundation modules for many FETAC Major Awards.

Sustainable Development FETAC Level 5 (L22380)

Short trainings ECO-UNESCO delivered short trainings to over 150 participants. Trainings were delivered on a consultancy outreach basis, in The Greenhouse and in cooperation with local authorities nationwide. The courses below were attended by and youth leaders, teachers, young people (peer educators), youth workers and environmental awareness officers: • Introduction to Environmental Education: Trends and Developments • Eco Community Garden Training • Eco Watchers Teachers and Leaders: Waste, Energy, Climate, Water. • Youth-work and Sustainability Training • Peer Education and Sustainability Training • Drugs Prevention Training Trainers • 6 Steps to Success: Young Environmentalist Awards Training

Advanced Short trainings ECO-UNESCO developed and piloted three new advanced trainings with a focus on educational professional development, personal professional development and organisational development. The following new courses were availed of by more than 40 participants over 4 training days: • Environmental Education Programme Development and Curriculum Links • Eco-Award: becoming a Sustainable Organisation • Leadership and Strategic Sustainable Development

Training Consultancy ECO-UNESCO developed and delivered accredited tailor made courses related to Sustainable Development, Sustainable Tourism/Business and Environmental Education to the following organisations: Inishowen Partnership, Outdoor Tourism Training Carlow, Glenveagh National Park, and Greenworks programmes (at regional hubs in Co. Cork and Co. Dublin). Courses


Training consultancy in focus CASE STUDY: Glenveigh National Park ECO-UNESCO developed and delivered a tailor made training on Environmental Education and Curriculum Links to the education team at Glenveigh National Park. Tailor made 2-day courses were researched, developed and delivered to Glenveagh National Park education staff. Day one consisted of an Introduction to Environmental Education with a focus on current trends and developments including key areas, methodologies and associated facilitation styles. Day 2 focused on developing environmental education programmes based on different curricula frameworks including primary, junior and leaving certificate cycles. This was just one of a number of bespoke training events delivered to groups around Ireland. The needs of individual organisations and their staff often demand that tools, approaches and methodologies from any training course reflect their own context in order to be of immediate use. ECO-UNESCO draws on 25 years experience to create tailor-made training courses that are able to do exactly that.




Youth for Sustainable Development ECO-UNESCO’s Youth for Sustainable Development programme promotes Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)/ Development Education (DE) in the non-formal education sector. It involves a variety of different projects which combine to build capacity and provide support for young people, and for youth workers and leaders working with young people, interested in sustainability issues.

Youth for Sustainable Development Peer Education Programme

Youth for the Future conference. Ann Finlayson, Director of SEEd (Sustainability and Environmental Education) UK pictured with Elaine Nevin, ECO-UNESCO National Director, at ECO-UNESCO’s Youth for the Future Conference.

The Youth for Sustainable Development Peer Education Programme uses interactive learning techniques to inspire, motivate and challenge young people to take action in favour of sustainable development. The programme encourages young people to develop an awareness of global issues linking their own lives to young people in the developing world. Through art, music, games, discussion and outdoor activities, young people gain a deeper understanding of sustainable development on a local and global level. They learn more about sustainability issues and are also trained in communication, facilitation and team building skills. The group also went on several field trips, including ones to Bull Island Reserve, Sonairte National Ecology Centre, Fota Wildlife Park, Howth and South Circular Road Community Garden. In 2010, over 50 new young people participated in the peer education programme. This involved three 12 week programmes with young people taking part in activities at least one evening per week. Peer Educators who participated in a 12 week programme in 2009 went on to start their Year of Action with ECO-UNESCO. This Year of Action started with 5 days of training and activities in August 2010 involves running a year-long action project on a sustainability issue. Their project, Polaware, aims to raise awareness about Climate Change. Another group of Peer Educators organised an Eco Day Out in Bushy Park to raise awareness about environmental issues among their peers. This involved interactive activities, sports and music all organised and carried out by the young peer educators.

Peer Education Handbook: Youth for the Future In 2010, ECO-UNESCO developed a Peer Education Handbook entitled Youth for the Future. This handbook provides a step-by-step guide to setting up and supporting a Peer Education for Sustainable Development Programme with over 40 interactive activities to carry out with young people as well as handy tips for young peer educators.

Training ECO-UNESCO runs one-day training programmes for youth workers, teachers and other people interested in working with young people on sustainability issues. In 2010 trainings were delivered to over 40 participants on the following trainings: • Youth Work and Sustainability Training • Peer Education and Sustainability Training • ECO Sustainability Award Training • ECO-UNESCO delivered its FETAC Level 5 Introduction to Sustainable Development module to 8 young people in Rathfarnham Youthreach. This was the first time that such a course has been delivered in a Youthreach centre was run as a pilot. The programme was a success with all participants receiving awards.

Conference Youth for the Future – learning to change our world On 22 September 2010 ECO-UNESCO welcomed 80 participants from all over Ireland to take part in the conference Youth for the Future – learning to change our world. The participants included young people as well as practitioners from the youth, environment, development and education sectors who came together to explore Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)/ Development Education (DE) issues and the involvement of young people. The conference had three main aims: 1. To reflect on current ESD/DE practice in the context of working with young people. 2. To connect young people and practitioners in the youth, environment, development and education sectors


Youth for Sustainable Development 3. To explore how ESD can be used in working with young people in nonformal education. The conference involved round table discussions, interactive workshops, an urban trail and other ESD activities to engage with the participants. Graphic recording was used as an innovative and inspiring way of capturing and presenting ideas generated and topics discussed at the conference.

Keynote Address Ann Finlayson, Director of SEEd (Sustainability and Environmental Education) UK, provided the keynote speech in which she presented a number of inspirational stories about enabling more of the education sector to engage with Education for Sustainable Development and Environmental Education.

Presentations Youth groups from ECO-UNESCO and Mayfield Community Arts presented projects and activities that they had done as part of their own peer education programmes. They explained the different ways in which they use ESD to explore issues that affect them, their communities and the world through creative activities, foreign exchanges and action projects.

Exhibition During the conference ECO-UNESCO also provided an opportunity for various organisations involved in Education for Sustainable Development and Development Education to exhibit, present and interact in the exhibition space on the ground floor of The Greenhouse. Organisations involved on the day included Link Community Development, Mayfield Arts, IDEA and Irish Aid.

The ECO Sustainability Award ECO-UNESCO piloted its new sustainability award in 2010. The ECO Sustainability Award, aims to encourage youth and community organisations to become more sustainable in their policies and practices; designed to assist and reward organisations who are working towards sustainability from a local and global perspective. The ECO Sustainability Award Pilot began in 2010 with The Cavan Centre and Larch Hill International Scout & Guide Centre; ECO-UNESCO provided training, advice and a pilot handbook to participating groups. The Award will be piloted with five more organisations in 2011.

ECO-Choices Programme ECO-UNESCO’s ECO-Choices programme is a drug misuse prevention programme using environmental education and education for sustainable development methods as a resource for positive personal development in young people.

ECO-Choices Short Trainings for youth leaders In 2010, continued to deliver this training for trainers on both an outreach & in-house basis to teachers and youth educators from organisations working with at-risk young people, early school leavers and marginalised groups in both the formal and non-formal education sector and worked with them to develop their own alternative drug misuse prevention programmes.

ECO-Youth Choices Peer Education Training Programme The ECO-Youth Choices Peer Education Programme in 2010 reached over 1200 young people. The ECO-Youth Choices Peer Education Programme worked with young people From a wide range of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. The young people involved in the ECO-Youth Choices programme developed environmental action projects; facilitated environmental workshops to Peers as Peer Educators; and participated in the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards programme. Those who had previously been involved in 2009 continued to work with ECO-UNESCO as Peer Educators and facilitated workshops on Social Personal Health Education (Drug Prevention), Drug Education, Sustainable Development & outdoor Environmental Education & Recreation in 2010.




Northern Ireland


ECO-UNESCO in Northern Ireland

Education Resources

ECO-UNESCO is committed to working with young people from both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. In 2010, ECO-UNESCO worked closely with environmental and youth organisations to share strategies for providing environmental education in Northern Ireland.

Each year ECO-UNESCO develops a range of educational resource packs and materials to help youth workers, teachers, schools and youth groups with their work in areas of environmental education and education for sustainable development.

The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Programme is unique among other environmental initiatives because it brings young people from both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland together in environmental action.

ECO-UNESCO produced the following publications in 2010: Energy Watchers resource pack – this provides youth leaders and teachers with practical ideas on how to explore energy issues with young people. It contains a wide variety of activities that can be easily adapted by the leader or teacher to suit their group.

In association with the Environmental Education Forum Northern Ireland, ECO-UNESCO provided training to teachers and leaders interested in developing environmental action projects for the Young Environmentalist Awards in Queen’s University, Belfast and other locations in Northern Ireland.

Young people from Grosvenor Grammar School pictured with their school garden project.

Overall Junior Winners, Friends School from Lisburn, Co. Antrim won with an innovative biodiversity trail as part of their project Spring into Action.

As a result of ECO-UNESCO’s continued involvement, many youth groups and schools from Northern Ireland participated in the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010, The Overall Junior Winners were Friends School from Lisburn, Co. Antrim with their project Spring into Action.

“The pupils love the Young Environmentalist Awards. The YEA is excellent at acknowledging the efforts of pupils, whether they win or not. Since we first entered in 2003, I have become more and more impressed as to how it has grown and grown, especially with schools in the North. As a high school, it also allows me to get involved with other departments. Crossdepartmental work and the carrying of ideas and understanding from one subject to another is very important and is growing in our school. More connected learning, which is what the new curriculum is all about! Hope it keeps going from strength to strength!” Jennifer McClelland, Teacher, Banbridge High School, Co. Down

CASE STUDIES JUNIOR Overall Winners ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010 Friends School Lisburn, Antrim. Project Title: Spring into Action Young representatives from around Northern Ireland at the launch of the The ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards.

This group created a Biodiversity Trail around their school grounds and got young people from their area involved. The trail was designed for both young people from their own school and other local primary schools to enjoy while learning about biodiversity. The group planted herb and vegetable beds in their wildlife garden, built bird boxes and engaged in a wide range of other activities throughout the year. During the autumn and winter they maintained the garden and pond and planned the spring garden. The group also designed a map and worksheets for local primary school students to enjoy the trail..

ECO-Watchers Toolkit – this provides ready-to-go lessons with cut-out and photocopy ready resources. These can be used as standalone lessons and activities or as the basis for projects on a number of environmental themes including Waste, Energy and Climate Change. Youth for the Future: peer education handbook this 90-page Peer Education Handbook provides a comprehensive guide to developing and supporting a Youth for Sustainable Development Peer Education Programme. The handbook includes over 40 interactive activities and helpful tips and checklists for both young people and adult support workers. ECO-UNESCO Clubs Handbook - this is a pocket-sized guide on how to set-up and run an ECO-UNESCO Club, full of great ideas and activities on how to get together to take action on environmental issues while having fun. The ECO-UNESCO Clubs Handbook was distributed to all ECO-UNESCO Clubs in 2010 and is available to all registered ECO-UNESCO Clubs. ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010: shortlisted projects booklet this contains summaries of the 50 most inspiring projects from the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010, invited to the annual showcase at the mansion house. Newsletter – the ECO-UNESCO newsletter was released in autumn and distributed to ECO-UNESCO members as well as thousands of schools, youth centres and libraries across the country. Green Trail - Map of Dublin: this resource accompanies our guided Green Trails of the city centre. It also doubles as a standalone guide, with a map and questions which allow users to discover and explore the biodiversity hotspots, urban ecology and natural heritage of the city centre through a walking trail of the city. Provision of information and awareness-raising ECO-UNESCO also produced and distributed a range of marketing collateral and information material to accompany our programmes and services and raise awareness of environmental and sustainability issues in our work. This was strengthened in 2010 through the provision of a public information service at The Greenhouse, where an ECO-UNESCO information officer was on hand to deal with enquiries from the public. Over 60,000 visitors came through the doors of The Greenhouse in 2010.

On song for the cameras. Young people from St Eunan’s Raphoe sing the environmental song they wrote as part of their ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards entry for RTE who were on hand to film the event.

Events As part of our outreach programme in 2010, ECO-UNESCO attended a number of events and conferences including: • • • • • • • • • • •


Lights, Camera,Action! Young ECO-Explorers crowd around to get in on the action as RTE come to see what ECO-UNESCO’s Halloween Camps are all about.

BT Young Scientist Exhibition Development and Intercultural Education Resource Fairs (Rathmines CICE; MIC Limerick; St Patrick’s; Marino and Froebel teacher training colleges) Cork Global Fest The Wave Irish Environmental Network Showcase Cinemagic Festival (Dublin & Belfast) Irish Environmental Network Biodiversity Week DLR Festival of World Cultures NYCI Youth Work Showcase Botanic Gardens Sustainable Development Fair JMB (School Management Representative body) Conference




Communications Media and Public Relations ECO-UNESCO increased its media presence in 2010. ECO-UNESCO appeared in over 176 media outlets including national and regional print and broadcast media. Elaine Nevin, National Director of ECO-UNESCO was interviewed as an expert on environmental education and youth work in both print and broadcast media. Many young ECO-UNESCO participants and their projects also featured in newspaper, radio and TV interviews. RTE also highlighted a number of ECO-UNESCO events including the ECO-Explorers Summer Camps and the ECOUNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010 Showcase on their young people’s programme News2Day. ECO-UNESCO also featured in Duncan Stewart’s ECO-Eye programme, as well a number of specialist magazines in the youth sector.

Social Media ECO-UNESCO increased its online presence in 2010, with the introduction of a facebook fan page, and a number of facebook groups through which members and participants networked, set-up, and promoted their events.

Representation and Advocacy ECO-UNESCO is an advocate for environmental education, education for sustainable development and environmental youth work. The organisation works to promote the role of young people in environmental education and environmental decision making in Ireland. In 2010 ECO-UNESCO was represented on a variety of committees and boards including: • • • • • • • • • •

COMHAR (Sustainable Development Council) National Youth Work Advisory Committee Irish Environmental Network Board NYCI National Youth Development Education Programme Advisory Committee National Steering Committee on Education for Sustainable Development Regional Centre of Expertise in Education for Sustainable Development UBUNTU Network Drugs Educators Workers Forum Stop Climate Chaos Tree Council of Ireland

The ECO-UNESCO Blog was another success story of 2010, with over 8,000 views at the time of the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2010 Showcase.

ECO-UNESCO goes international ECO-UNESCO’s international work included a number of high profile events and collaborations, highlights amongst which were an ongoing collaboration with Japan’s Peace Boat and an invitation extended to Elaine Nevin, ECO-UNESCO’s National Director to White House.

ECO-UNESCO at the White House On March 17th 2010, ECO-UNESCO National Director, Elaine Nevin, attended the St. Patricks Day reception in the White House, as a guest of President Barrack Obama. The theme of the day was ‘innovation’ and the invitation was in recognition of Elaine Nevins role in leading ECOUNESCO’s work in the area of youth development, environmental protection and community engagement.

Japan’s Peaceboat Since 2005, ECO-UNESCO has been working with Peaceboat, a Japanese organisation working to build peace and sustainability awareness around the world. In June 2010, Elaine Nevin boarded Peaceboat in Helsinki to give lectures and workshops on environmental issues and our responses in Northern Europe. Also docking in Dublin, Peaceboat participants visited ECO-UNESCO’s new headquarters in The Greenhouse, where we provided a variety of engaging, interactive and thought-provoking workshops on environmental issues in Ireland.

ECO-UNESCO National Director, Elaine Nevin with the newly appointed Cultural Ambassador Gabriel Byrne and at the White House reception on 17th March, 2010

Since 1983 the Peace Boat has visited more than 80 ports with over 10,000 participants and carried out a number of other projects such as a Galapagos reforestation project.





Collaborative working

ECO-UNESCO Peer Educator Ailbhr show TV personality Duncan Stewart and ECO-UNESCO National Director, Elaine Nevin how to make a Tetra pack-Wallet at the launch of The Greenhouse, a collaborative initiative between ECO-UNESCO and Cultivate.

Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey, ECO-UNESCO National Director, Elaine Nevin and other dignitaries at the launch of Mobility Week 2010

During 2010, ECO-UNESCO continued to develop links and partnerships with agencies, organisations and businesses to provide environmental education, youth programmes and teacher and leader trainings in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. ECO-UNESCO collaborated with a variety of Local Authorities throughout Ireland; the Irish Environmental Network, Environmental Education Forum Northern Ireland, Northern Irish Environment Agency, Youth organisations including Youthreach Centres; and private companies including VitHit and Toyota Ireland.

Cinemagic 2010 ECO-UNESCO continued its collaboration with Cinemagic, a film organisation based in Belfast, on their International Children’s Film Festival 2010. On the day of the Cinemagic Dublin Film Festival in May, ECO-UNESCO facilitated a number of exciting environmental workshops to over 80 eager participants.

ECO-UNESCO is funded by a variety of organisations contributing to both the overall development of the organisation and project specific work. In 2010, ECO-UNESCO’s funding from government agencies reduced due to cuts in public spending. The organisation continued to diversify its range of funding sources.

ECO-UNESCO’s main core funding comes through: •

• •

the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government administered by the Irish Environmental Network Local Authorities nationwide under the Environmental Partnership Fund

ECO-UNESCO receives a range of funding related to specific projects. These include: •

ECO-UNESCO worked in collaboration with the Greenworks programme in delivering training courses up-skilling the unemployed in Sustainable Development with a particular focus on sustainable business development. Two accredited courses leading to ECO-UNESCO’s FETAC Sustainable Development FETAC L 5 award were delivered at regional Greenworks hubs in Dublin and Cork respectively.

• •

ECO-UNESCO works with Local Authorities nationwide through funding from the Environmental Partnership Fund. The fund allows ECO-UNESCO to work with communities, fulfilling important aspects of the Local Agenda 21 remit. ECO-UNESCO builds the capacity of young people, teachers and leaders to address environmental issues. In 2010, ECO-UNESCO was awarded funding from Environmental Partnership Funds for a total of 10 projects through local authorities. With this funding, ECO-UNESCO was able to reach teachers, leaders and young people through trainings and workshops. ECO-UNESCO worked with Monaghan County Council, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, Limerick County Council, Limerick City Council, Waterford City Council, South Dublin County Council, Roscommon County Council, Fingal County Council, Donegal County Council and, Clare County Council on a wide range of projects including: ECO-Watchers Training for teachers and leaders (Energy, Waste & Climate Education) ECO-Watcher Training for young people (Energy, Waste & Climate Education); ECO–Community Garden Training for teachers and leaders; Energy Watchers: A resource pack for teachers and leaders, ECO-Watchers Toolkit: A toolkit teachers and leaders among others. ECO-UNESCO also developed a number of educational resources for schools and youth groups with this funding.

the Youth Service Grant, administered by the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs

ECO-UNESCO receives additional funding from:

Greenworks Programme

ECO-UNESCO’s work with Local Authorities

Louise Murphy of Toyota Ireland and ECO-UNESCO National Director, Elaine Nevin at the official handover of an ECO-Friendly Toyota Prius to be used for site visits to ECO-UNESCO Clubs Nationwide as part of Toyota’s support for ECO-UNESCO.


ECO-Choices: Young People’s Facilities and Services Fund, administered by the Office of the Minster for Children and Youth Affairs Youth for Sustainable Development: Irish Aid Young Environmentalist Awards: Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government; Northern Ireland Environment Agency Comhar, Sustainable Development Council; Environmental Protection Agency Phoenix Park Summer Programme: Office of Public Works

ECO-UNESCO receives funding through membership fees, resource sales, training courses and donations. ECO-UNESCO received corporate donations from Symantec in 2010.

ECO-UNESCO receives support and funding through corporate sponsorship: ECO-UNESCO is working in a collaborative relationship with Toyota Ireland. Toyota supports the ECO-UNESCO Clubs in Action programme and also supports ECO-UNESCO’s programmes through the donation of a Toyota Prius to the organisation and by providing a special award and development fund for the ECO-UNESCO Club of the year as part of the Young Environmentalist Awards programme.

Where We Work









Cavan Mayo





Longford Meath



Galway Offaly






The Biozone supported by the Irish Environmental Network went down a storm at the ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards showcase.


2010 Shortlisted Projects


Kilkenny Wexford



Kerry Cork



ECO-UNESCO The Greenhouse 17 St. Andrew Street Dublin 2 T: +353 1 6625491 F: + 353 1 6625493 Email: Web: ECO-UNESCO is affiliated to the World Federation of UNESCO clubs, centres and associations (WFUCA).

ECO-UNESCO is funded by the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs with Support of the National Lottery Funds

Irish Environmental Network ECO-UNESCO is part-funded by the Department of the Environment, Heritage & Local Government through the Irish Environmental Network Printed on 100% recycled uncoated paper


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