Greener BeeGreen HolidaysEco-Clubs: How to turn the kids green over the holidays

Cape Town- In the effort to develop the learners and kid’s’ appreciation for nature and increased their ecological knowledge, there are a few eco projects done in primary schools and communities so that the kids can learn how to preserve nature. 

SEE: 12 Green initiatives to love in SA

Here are some clubs and programmes that learners can take part in. 

Eco club 

After a successful new environmental programme launched in 2016, a series called Eco Club will be showing on Disney Channel funded by Disney through the Africa Foundation (USA) from April.

Eco Club is a project is head up by The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA), in partnership with Africa Foundation and Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve and was targeted at 210 learners from five rural schools in the community in the Mduku area of Umkhanyakude district, Northern KwaZulu-Natal.

The show will follow the learners that participated in the programme.

The programme entails an active participation in a range of nature and biodiversity focused activities.

Active participation included

1. Encountering the “big five” species of animals at Phinda and learning about the lesser known “little five” whilst in the camp. Both the “big five” species – elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard – and the “little five” – elephant shrew, rhinoceros beetle, buffalo weaver, ant lion and leopard tortoise

2. Learners creating their school’s own wilderness area by planting an indigenous garden.

3. Learners monitoring the habitats they had created to see when any of the “little five” took up residence in the school grounds.

”The programme at the participating schools also contributed to whole-school development by providing the structure for environmental considerations to be included in all school management decisions,’ – WESSA

  Lethokuhle Gumede, with the tree he planted at his school, Mdudla Primary. 

SEE: Fancy an Easter Weekend in the winelands?

Kids in the Park

In the aim to teach kids about biodiversity and sustaining it, learners are afforded an opportunity to visit a national park and learn about South Africa’s natural and cultural heritage.

It is a three day programme where the kids learn and discover new info while having fun.

The programme is in partnership with Department of Environmental Affairs, its entity SANParks, the Department of Basic Education and retailer Pick ‘n Pay.

This programme aims to teach the importance of national parks.

In 2003, Pick ‘n Pay introduced green bags into the market. And the R1 from every R5 bag goes to a special environmental fund, which now provides the financial backbone for Kids in Parks.

With the water problem, the country is facing now, the programme also includes learning about water conservation and staying overnight at the camp also offers them an opportunity to learn about careers in conservation. 

At the end of this three year programme, five different parks will have welcomed a total of 7 500 learners, 300 educators from 150 primary schools.

The Muizenberg youth project

Aimed at making children love biodiversity, this project teaches children about indigenous plants in their local park.

This project was started in 2016 and the purpose is to give children a chance to be part of something constructive to get involved in.

Friends of Muizenberg Park are restoring the park, an organisation to promote public enjoyment, conversation and sound management if the park.

The children meet for a session every Friday and these are facilitated by environmentalists Karel Lewy-Phillips and Victoria Burnett, members of the Friends of Muizenberg Park’s biodiversity team and Ann Gill, a local resident who teaches the kids about poisonous, useful, edible and medicinal plants that grow in the park. 

READ: SA Insider Guide: Easter school holidays events across SA

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