Youth empowerment through environmental education in rural Bhutan

Partner: Druk Clean Pledgethon

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Bhutan is a country like no other: rich of thousand years of history, squeezed between its Chinese and Indian giant cousins, slowly waking up to globalisation, it has managed to retain sovereignty over its wonderful natural resources, and is to this day the only carbon-negative country in the world.

But pressing environmental issues loom on the horizon: natural habitat fragmentation, biodiversity loss, or waste disposal, to name a few. Here just like everywhere else, it is on the shoulders on the young generation that rests the task of creating a fair future for all in a changing world.

 

What Slow Motion Projects will do

In the summer of 2019, SMP will organise a week-long nature camp for 30 children aged 9 to 16 years old at the Bajo Higher Secondary School, in the Wangdue Phodrang district of central Bhutan.

Practical teaching led by our partner Druk Clean Pledgethon will centre around the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) of waste management, and concrete actions such as door-to-door advocacy and individual pledges. Through this camp, children will not only become more aware of the impact of their own actions on the environment, but they will also learn how to replicate the impact of their learnings across their community.

 

Our local partner

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Bishnu Chettri is a young Bhutanese whose ambition to broadly enable sustainable development for his people go far beyond his home country. We met him during our first stay in Bhutan, when he was a young research fellow at the Ugyen Wangchuk Institute for Conservation and Environmental Research (see our blog post). We have kept in touch ever since, as he moved to India for his studies and then came back to Bhutan to take up a role within the United Nations Development Programme, where he is now a UNV National Youth Programme Officer. Bishnu also volunteered for our last Sustainability Winter Camp in Ladakh where he undertook key roles as coordinator, facilitator as well as in communication and outreach.

Bishnu is passionate about concrete applications of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals framework in developing regions, and for this project he has teamed up with Druk Clean Pledgethon, a local organisation encouraging Bhutanese children to apply zero waste principles and be mindful of their impact on the environment.

 

Project location