Conservation Education sensitization field work report Excerpts from a field trip report prepared by Japhet and team 1.0 Introduction On March 19th through March 21st 2008, AWFâ€™s Manyara ranch project under TLCT (Tanzania Land Conservation Trust) facilitated a joint sensitization field visit of schools within part of the Tarangire Manyara Ecosystem to introduce conservation education programs. This initiative was jointly developed by AWF and Roots & Shoots coordinator, Japhet Jonas, who wanted to model a programme of the Jane Goodall Institute which succeeded in the western Tanzania to bring change in community attitudes towards natural resources management. The exercise of going around sensitizing schools in the area was guided by Japhet with the assistance of an AWF and TLCT field staff team. They went around making schools aware of conservation education programs and teaching material that have been used by JGI in partnership with Nature for Kids to address NRM issues using inspirational, entertainments-education videos and other activities including expeditions and formation of membership clubs for a diversity of audiences using committed members and teachers. The recent exercise reached a total of ten Primary and Secondary Schools around Manyara Ranch. This edited report compiled by Japhet provides an overall feedback of the proposed conservation education programme and articulates lessons learnt from the sensitization filed visit and recommendations for the next steps for the way forward. 2.0 Nature and Scope of sensitization Prior to the sensitization fled visit, a meeting between Dr. Kiruswa, Josephine, Aaron and Japhet was held at AWF offices in Arusha. It was agreed that the first priority to execute this conservation education program would be to show the freely provided Nature for Kids environmental videos. However, it was concluded that there is a need to carry out general sensitization in order to create basic awareness. The sensitization exercise helped the team to determine the level of institutional acceptance and possibilities of targeted schools establishing conservation clubs in order to infuse activities of these clubs into the school framework. Since the target aim of Manyara Ranch is to restore rangelands by promoting grass and tree planting programs, it was agreed emphasis be made for teachers to understand and accept the need to integrate grass and tree planting into some of the activities clubs could do. Later Japhet could help teach members of the community through the use of Roots & Shoots project exhibit techniques.
Sensitization was done in ten schools; eight Primary and two Secondary schools. Primary schools sensitized included Manyara Ranch, Esilalei, Makuyuni, Mswakini Juu, Mswakini Chini, Naitolia, Oltukai and Olasiti. Secondary schools included Lowasa and JKT-Makuyuni. HI Amy! The team made presentations and provided descriptions about the meaning of Roots & Shootsâ€™ clubs, structure, activities, experiences and ways of establishing clubs. Membership forms were distributed and instructions on how teachers could start clubs of highly committed members. 3.0 Outcomes of the programme At the end of the sensitization programme, all visited schools managed to form clubs. Headmasters have accepted and received the programme and team would like to make this one of the most successful conservation clubs programme in the northern Tanzania. 4.0
Both teachers and students had different perceptions regarding natural resource management and for the first time many have come to realized the role they could play through the initiation of this conservation education program. In some of the schools visited they already had Malihai Clubs, Scout Clubs and other environmental clubs that are not well coordinated. Our team role would be to help build on existing clubs and make them functional and acceptable to address immediate and long term conservation issues in their school communities. 5.0
Recommendations and next steps for the way forward
A teachers training is recommended for two days (late March, 2008 after Easter Holiday) in Tarangire National Park. This training will involve 33 Teachers (two environmental teachers and head-teachers). Six facilitators will provide inspirational and in-depth understanding of environmental issues. Each evening, Nature for Kids videos, Childrenâ€™s earth programme and AWF videos will be shown. After this training, the entertainment education video developed by Nature for Kids, AWF, Roots and Shoots will be rolled out for all schools sensitized so far.