EMPOWERING ECO-EDUCATION. Skills and experiences for nature interpretation

The goal of the project is to generate understanding and active participation of youth and teachers from the pilot area for the capitalization of natural and cultural heritage of the Orheiul Vechi Reserve and of its surroundings.

Objective 1: Build competences of local youth about nature and heritage interpretation;

Objective 2: Increase knowledge and participation of youth in the promotion activities of the Orheiul Vechi Reserve and of its surrounding;

Objective 3: Consolidate the network of teachers from the Orheiul Vechi Reserve area and its surroundings and increase their opportunities for the applying of experiential learning activities together with their typical indoor classes.

The proposed project will involve 10 schools from the Orheiul Vechi cultural-natural Reserve area and its surroundings. In each school there will be teachers – local coordinators of the project – in charge of organizing activities at local level with active youth participation.

Following activities are planned to be implemented:

1. Capacity building trainings for teachers. During the project implementation there will be organized 3 trainings for teachers participating in the project.

Pictures from training #1 on capitalization of natural and cultural heritage through active youth participation. Eco-clubs creation. Project initiation.

2. Nature and heritage interpretation training for pupils from the 10 schools. The training on nature and heritage interpretation will have a duration of 2 hours and will be held in each of the 10 schools of the pilot area. Target group: youth aged 11 to 17 years old.

Pictures from trainings

3. Field trips in the Orheiul Vechi Reserve’s area.

Each of the 10 schools participants in the project will organize by 2 excursions related to the Orheiul Vechi site.

One excursion will be organized within the Orheiul Vechi Exhibition Centre. The administration of the Reserve, as partner of the project, will ensure the on-site interpretation of the natural and cultural heritage.

Pictures from the Orheiul Vechi Exhibition Centre excursions

The second excursion will be organized by the local coordinators from each school on the nature trails of the area (for example the Birdwatching trail developed by the Ecological Movement of Moldova).

Pictures from the hiking activities

4. Creative contest for the best interpretation message about the Orheiul Vechi Reserve. Each school will organize a local contest for the best interpretation message and representation of the Orheiul Vechi Reserve.

Pictures from the awarding ceremony

Prizes for all participants in the contest

Winning artworks

5. Summer camp. The summer camp will be one of the prizes for the winners of the contest. Duration of the summer camp – 5 days. During the summer camp will be organized outdoor classes performed by specialists in biodiversity (For exemple: experts from the forestry service). Pupils will go for hiking and nature observation on the Curchi-Donici trail (located in the surroundings of the Orheiul Vechi Reserve, part of the Orhei National Park), and learn about trees, flowers, birds, etc.

6. Service projects grants. Schools that will participate in the project will have the opportunity to participate in a small grants competition. All project beneficiaries will be invited to write a simple project proposal for the implementation of one of the following activities: fairs, conferences, exhibitions, cleaning-up activities, creation of promotional materials or other relevant activities related to the capitalization of the cultural and natural resources in the area of the Orheiul Vechi Reserve and of its surroundings.

7. Mass-media campaign. In order to make visible the project’s activities there will be held a mass-media campaign, including articles in print and online press, radio and social media.

Radio programmes:

EcoFM – radio

Radio Moldova (min.00:68-00:76)

Period of project implementation: March – November 2019

Donnor: US Forest Service

Project budget: 30 850,00 US$ (of which 25 750,00 US$  US Forest Service contribution, 5 150,00 US$ contribution of the Ecological Movement of Moldova and of its partners)