In commemoration of the World Environment Day, the SDGs Academy ‘Model Classroom’ organised a learning and tree planting session with 24 students from Maris Stella College Negombo, Sri Lanka.
The session, which in part took place within the Academy premises took the students through an understanding of SDGs 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), 13 (Climate Action), 14 (Life Below Water) and 15 (Life on Land). The choice of these SDGs was informed by their close relation to the environment and the different ecosystems. Addressing these SDGs in particular, among other goals, will go a long way in preserving and enhancing the environment and the global climate scourge in general.
“The Model classroom is the classroom we are looking for in our school. A friendly space for us to learn, be innovative, and be ourselves with our fresh ideas. Thank you Arigatou International for creating that space for us to learn SDGs and be innovative in our own way” – Venuja, 15 years old boy from Sri Lanka.
Discussions around these SDGs were linked to the Day’s theme: Solutions to Plastic Pollution – a call for global action to end plastic pollution. This was informed by worrying reports that each year, an estimated 11 million tonnes of plastic waste flows into the world’s oceans; this volume is expected to triple by 2040.
Discussions in the SDGs Academy for Children were followed by tree planting activities. The students and staff from the Academy/Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement planted mango trees signifying their commitment to conserve the environment and enhancing food production through fruits born out of the mango trees.
Further, the students pledged to take deliberate and continued action towards achieving the SDGs, after an exciting enlightenment about the global goals at the Academy. The Model Classroom aims to keep and advance such partnerships with institutions in order to raise more awareness about the SDGs and the need to involve young people in achieving the goals.
“This is not only a space or a learning course for children to learn about SDGs: This is something beyond that, where children could learn about their lives and change their way of living for a better world that we are dreaming of as adults. This is a place even adults could learn and contribute to a better world with children” Jude Preman, teacher, Maris Stella College, Negombo
Declared by the United Nations in 1972, the World Environment Day to highlight that the protection and health of the environment is a major issue, which affects the well-being of peoples and economic development throughout the world. The celebration of this day provides us with an opportunity to broaden the basis for an enlightened opinion and responsible conduct by individuals, enterprises and communities in conserving the environment.
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