Boschi per la Biosfera – Forests for the Biosphere
With “Boschi per la Biosfera”, local schoolchildren will be educated and encouraged to directly participate in reforestation efforts.
With “Boschi per la Biosfera”, local schoolchildren will be educated and encouraged to directly participate in reforestation efforts. This 6-months project reaches out to 110 elementary school classes around the Etna, all together about 2,200 children. Each child participates in three different parts of the climate-forest education: One lesson at school, one educational excursion into the forest (or urban park), and one field excursion for seeding oak trees and Mount Etna broom.
The project incorporates 15 international volunteers, mostly from Central and Eastern European Countries (CEE), and young professionals from the Etna region, receiving training and permanent inputs from German and CEE experts in order to conduct education and reforestation activities with children. This yields a multiplier effect, since the skills and knowledge obtained by volunteers and young professionals through training and project work, can be used in their future careers and passed on to others in their home countries. Apart from environmental education and awareness raising on climate protection among the wider population, direct outputs include the restoration of approx. 10 ha with natural forest cover and the construction of an environmental education path.
Climate Workshop Excursion with Volunteers and Experts; Photo: Andrea Aidala
The project is based on the long cooperation in nature protection and environmental educational between the executing partners (Manfred-Hermsen-Stiftung and Giacche Verdi Bronte), and the ERASMUS programme for volunteer exchange.
The project area comprises the river valleys surrounding Mt. Etna. This region is preparing for a UNESCO nomination of a Biosphere Reserve in order to foster sustainable and climate conscious development.
Children plant trees
Over the next 40 years, 2,497 newly planted oak trees will bind 600,000 kg of CO2 in Sicily. 2,497 schoolchildren each planted a tree, learning more about the importance of healthy forests for the climate and the dangers of climate change. They will benefit from what they have learned and from the positive impact of more trees.
This project is part of the European Climate Initiative (EUKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU). It is the overarching goal of the EUKI to foster climate cooperation within the European Union (EU) in order to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.