|UNESCO Experts Climate Change Meeting, Nassau, Bahamas, Sept 21-23, 2011|
UNESCO’s Experts Meeting on Climate Change
for Sustainable Development and Adaptation
in Small Island Developing States (SIDS)
(Sept 21-23, 2011, Nassau, The Bahamas)
Once again Sandwatch was well represented at an international UNESCO forum on climate change and education with Sandwatchers from The Seychelles, Kiribati, Cook Islands, St. Kitts & Nevis and of course The Bahamas attending.
This Experts Meeting in Nassau was a follow up to UNESCO's International Seminar on Climate Change Education (Paris July 27-29th, 2009) that Sandwatch was also well represented at.
Both Gillian Cambers and myself attended the meeting and gave presentations and in addition met many more experts and grass roots educators from around the world, many of whom have pledged to become involved with Sandwatch themselves and help it grow within their home regions. So we hope to be expanding the programme even more over the coming weeks and months.
Copies of the new Sandwatch Manual "Sandwatch: Adapting to climate change and educating for sustainable development" were handed out to delegates as were full colour copies of the latest issue of The Sandwatcher (Sept 2011)
During the course of the conference, three regional focal groups were formed with representatives from The Caribbean, The Pacific and The Indian Ocean Regions. These three groups met to discuss and plan the way forward for their regions for climate change education and ESD related issues. The results of these discussions will be announced shortly and may well determine the future direction these programs take globally.
Sandwatch Coordinator for The Bahamas Candace Key presents copies of The Sandwatcher to Dr. Davidson Hepburn, President of The General Session of UNESCO and
Bahamian Minister for the Environment, Mr. Phenton Neymour (left) & Permanent Secretary for Education, Mrs. Elma Garroway (right)
On a personal note it was really great for Gillian and I to meet friends and colleagues for afar, whom we dont see in person very often except every couple of years at meetings of this sort, but more important than that is to make new friends and colleagues, to learn about their projects and see how we can assist them with finding help and support for their endeavours. Sandwatch is essentially a network of grass roots environmentalists working at the community level and anything we can do to help educators and students in similar circumstances is a duty and one that pays dividends by expanding and strengthening our circle of friends and colleagues.
During the meeting Gillian and I also took the opportunity to meet with some colleagues to discuss the new Sandwatch Online Database.
A prototype of the database is currently running on the UNESCO servers at Paris HQ, but a lot more work has to be completed on it before it is ready for use by Sandwatchers worldwide.
More on this project will be announced before the end of this year.
Sandwatchers fromThe Seychelles, Kiribati, The Cook Islands, The Bahamas and others attended the meeting
Dr. Davidson Hepburn and Ms. Gretchen Kalonji the Assistant-Director-General, Science Sector at UNESCO HQ were just two of the featured speakers