Project title: Practicalising Environmental Education in Schools
Description: Cameroon has for centuries depended on peasant agriculture as the mainstay of the economy. Human activities in such an economy continually threaten the ecological balance and sustainability of the natural resources required to match the needs of a growing population. The changing landscape in most Cameroonian communities is an eye opener to the rate of destruction of the environment erosion and landslides have taken hold of some communities.
Today, environmental degradation is a common occurrence throughout the Mount Cameroon region. People cut trees indiscriminately to burn charcoal or fuel wood. People ferry fuel wood markets without giving thought to the effect on the environment. Some cut timber for furniture and construction while others clear forests to gain more space for cultivation. To these individuals increased production is solved by reclaiming more rather than intensifying methods of production. Yearly, especially around the Mount Cameroon region, bushfire consumes a considerable portion of the forest.
The effect of these activities are abvious, there is a steady rise in temperature resulting in climate change. Policy makers have succeeded, especially at basic education level to introduce Environmental Education in the school curriculum, with the introduction of new syllabus since the year 2000. However, teachers have remained busy teaching Environmental Education just as they do other related subjects like Nature Study and Geography, without emphasising practical activities like planting of trees, recycling of waste, making of compost for gardening. This is what has made environmental education mere talk because the schools lay bare without shade trees, no nurseries, no gardens etc.
The present seven-year National Syllabus for English Speaking Primary Schools in Cameroon on Environmental Education has the provisions that can enable pupils develop the practical skills on natural resource management. With the partnership between various stakeholders of Environmental Education: Ministry of Basic Education (including Teacher Training College – Buea), Catholic Education Secretariat (CES) of the Dioceses of Buea, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MINADER), Ministry of Environment and Nature Protection (MINEP), Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife (MINFOF), ICRAF and other partners, we shall create a synergy that is going to enhance relevance in our basic educational system.
Global Objective: “To promote practical environmental awareness and skills in basic education”
1. Re-enforcing awareness/skills in natural resources management and ensure these are they promoted from generation to generation
2. Establish satellite integrated environmental education centres in schools
3. Promote awareness on the nutritional value of natural resources and their management among school children.
4. Reinforce linkages and collaboration with local communities for sustainable environmental conservation and protection.
5. Promote advocacy for suitable environmental management in basic education.
6. Facilitate exchange of experiences and knowledge at Sub Divisional level.
The monitoring and evaluation process will start with a baseline data collection from the zone of operation. In the course of implementation regular reviews will be made to ensure every activity contributes towards the project’s overall success. Reports will be prepared and disseminated to relevant stakeholders.
Project Partner(s): Local Technical Services of:
- Ministry of Basic Education
- Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
- Ministry of Environment and Nature Protection
N.B. No funding has been got yet. The above partners are only to provide technical services. We need to practicalise the implementation of the Environmental Education Curriculum by introducing School Gardens and Tree Nurseries.