Green-minded young people from Ramelton Community Youth Project and St. Eunan’s NS, Raphoe, competed with schools and youth groups from across Ulster at the innovative regional dragon’s den style ‘ECO-Den’ held by ECO-UNESCO at the Lough Neagh Discovery Centre, Craigavon Borough, Co. Antrim recently. They pitched their projects to the panel of expert judges to convince them that their group should attend the final ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards 2012 showcase and ceremony in the Mansion House in Dublin on May 8. The Ulster ECO-Den was kindly supported by Craigavon Borough Council.
A colourful exhibition was created as part of the day where the Young Environmentalists showcased their projects and shared information about their ECO-action with their peers and visitors. As part of this action packed day, Lough Neagh Discovery Centre staff brought the young people on a journey of discovery with interactive workshops ‘Brilliant Beasts and Incredible Insects’ and ‘Grow Your School’ which included seed planting and renovating the Centre’s ‘mini beast hotel’ to promote biodiversity in the area.
The Co. Donegal groups inspired the judges, Elaine Nevin, ECO-UNESCO Director; Meta Crozier, Chair of Leisure Services Committee, Craigavon County Council; and Marcus Malley, Conservation Officer, Craigavon County Council; with details of their ECO-Action projects.
The Ramelton Treesome Kids from the Ramelton Community Youth Project illustrated how young people can play a decisive role in community action by leading through example.
Their diverse project included the ‘Doggy Doo Workshop’ which surveyed problem dog fouling areas in the town, they are also working at the beautification of their area by developing a community town garden, planting trees, cleaning up littler and campaigning for our environment and local natural heritage.
St Eunan’s heated up the competition by pitching their project ‘The World is What We Make It,’ which aimed at educating people about our responsibility towards the fight against Climate Change. They set about an ambitious series of contributions to the community to promote responsibility in regards to citizen’s actions. These ranged from cycle training, building a bicycle shelter, building a library from people’s used books and setting up mobile phones recycling bank. They also created a photo exhibit and had a newspaper launch.
Locals are invited to support their favourite project in an all-island online public poll, ‘The People’s Choice Award 2012.’ Voting is open until April 30.
You can simply log onto www.ecounesco.ie and support your local youth-led ECO-Action today!