Prakriti Bus at the 25th International Kite Festival

Prakriti the Environmental Education Bus, developed by CEE is a mobile resource centre which conveys the message of conservation of resources. The bus was recently invited by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) to be a part of the 25th International Kite Festival in Ahmedabad on January 12-13 at the Sabarmati River Front, Ahmedabad.

The interactive panels and games were a popular attraction.

The Festival attracted large number of participants and kite enthusiasts. It was a great platform for the CEE team to spread the message of sustainability to a cross-section of people. The Prakriti bus, with its interactive panels focusing on themes of Energy, Biodiversity, Climate Change, etc. received a huge response, especially from children.

Education for Sustainable Development and Challenges for Education

Mr. Kartikeya Sarabhai, Director, CEE delivered the 51st Nanabhai Bhatt Memorial Lecture held on January 9-10 at Lok Bharti, Sanosara, near Bhavnagar. Lok Bharti, is a rural university imparting higher education, based on the vision of its founder Nanabhai Bhatt. 2013 marks 60 years of its establishment.

Mr. Sarabhai interacting with audience at Lok Bharti

In his talk Mr. Sarabhai linked ESD with some of the major strands in the Indian educational system of the last century as demonstrated in the thinking and initiatives of Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore, and Madam Montesorri. He traced how these influenced the Lok Dakshanimurty movement pioneered by Nanabhai Bhatt, and highlighted that while Nanabhai considered tradition as providing the foundation, he did not see this as limiting new ideas.

Celebrating National Youth Day

Green Actions for Waste Management: demonstrating how to make hand-made paper and compost (Jhatpat Khaad).

A group of 55 children and youth of SAVE Club marked National Youth Day with the theme of waste management. CEE Jaipur was invited to introduce members to the concepts, need and the process of waste management. Through an interactive session, participants were briefed about the importance of waste segregation and the concept of 4R's of waste management i.e. recycle, reduce, reuse and refuse. The Club also organized a Clean up Drive, in competition mode, to involve the local community in generating awareness on the importance of segregation and proper disposal of waste as the first step of its management along with allied issues of health.

Paryavaran Mitra Schools showcase their work

A day-long district level event was organized by Paryavaran Mitra NGO partner Lok Paryavaran Shiksha Sanshtan at Rishikesh on January 15. The programme was attended by eighty students and ten teachers from eight schools of district Tehri Garhwal, Uttarakhand. The aim of the event was to provide students and teachers with a platform to share their Paryavaran Mitra-related experiences. Dr. Krishna Kumar Upreti, an expert on local social and environmental issues was the Chief Guest at the event. He was accompanied by dignitaries from other NGOs and schools.

Students of Ganga Academy showed the biodiversity model developed by them.

Students participated in a speech competition based on the five themes of Paryavaran Mitra. Some schools also brought charts and models related to biodiversity and energy to demonstrate the work that they have undertaken as part of their action projects.

Students of Ganga Academy shared their experiences about fixing leaking taps, channelizing waste water to school gardens and setting up tanks to harvest rainwater.

Students of Rajshri Children's Academy, Gumaniwala worked together to promote the practice of garbage segregation in their school. The school has been practicing segregation of wet and dry waste in separate dustbins placed both inside and outside the school premises, and have discontinued the use of polythene bags inside the school campus as a Paryavaran Mitra initiative.

Vidaya Niketan Junior High school shared their initiative of an energy-saving campaign by replacing bulbs with CFL lights and making it mandatory for everybody to turn off all electrical appliances when not in use. Planting saplings, weeding out unwanted plants and maintaining herbal and kitchen gardens are some activities that the other schools have been involved in.

The event helped students to showcase their efforts on a public platform and be recognized for their work. Each of the participants was presented with a participation certificate and honored with saplings as a token of appreciation and encouragement.

The Water Connects Campaign

The Paryavaran Mitra Programme announced the "Water Connects"campaign for schools. The campaign connects the World Wetlands Day (February 2); World Biological Diversity Day (May 22); and the World Environment Day (June 5) to the World Water Day (March 22), as all these days would be directed towards water co-operation this year.

2013 has been declared as the United Nations-International Year of Water Co-operation.

The Water Connects Campaign encourages students to participate in the campaign via the Water Connect webpage on the Paryavaran Mitra website The webpage has information on the topic and also has handprint action project ideas for schools. Schools will share stories and ideas about their Handprint initiatives on the theme undertaken in their schools and communities.

An Exhibition at Sundarvan

More than 1000 visitors enjoyed the display of wildlife photos in the environs of Sundarvan.

An exhibition of wildlife photographs was held at Sundarvan, CEE's Nature Discovery Centre, from January 6-13. Mr. Dipak Patel, Director, Siddhi Developers, was the man behind the lens for the eye-catching pictures of birds and mammals captured both in India and east African countries, displayed at this exhibition. Dr. R.K. Sahu, Superintendent, Kamala Nehru Zoological Park and Mrs. Sahu inaugurated the exhibition. In his address Dr. Sahu emphasized the role of Sundarvan in environmental education and asked the gathering to extend hands to support the Park. Mr. Patel generously donated the amount raised by the sale of the pictures at this exhibition towards the development work at Sundarvan.

CEE is the ENVIS centre on Environmental Education (EE). As an ENVIS centre, CEE caters to the information needs of environmental educators. Write to the CEE ENVIS Centre at [email protected]