Environment360 and the GES Accra District have launched the Green Schools Academy in 23 schools within the Greater Accra District. The Green Schools Academy is a pilot program that is enabling teachers to bring environmental education into classrooms through the provision of training and interactive educational resources such as games and songs. The programme runs in collaboration with the United Nations University-MERIT, and the NGO Friend in Need India Trust.
The program, which is funded by the UNDP Waste Recovery and Innovation Challenge, was scheduled to start last year. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic the program is just now making its way into schools. Despite, the setbacks, Environment360 and GES have managed to train 23 teachers during the past 3 months, who are expected to provide environmental education to more than 1,100 children this academic school year. The GES Accra District is excited for the roll-out of the program and is looking forward to witnessing its impact.
Environment360 has provided environmental education for more than 10,000 children in the past five years and is hoping that the Green School Academy can sustainably scale the organization’s educational model at a quicker pace
“This is what is called a butterfly effect, my tiny experiment in an isolated village in India, taken to Ghana by a passionate student, Maria Tomai, who met Cordie and the rest is history! I am proud of all that we have achieved together, and I am sure the teachers and GES are going to make the program even better! We can’t wait for the pandemic to end to meet the sustainability champions from Green Academy schools!” Quote from Prof Shyama V. Ramani, Friend In Need India, United Nations University-MERIT
‘’We have been honoured to work with schools in various educational districts in Accra and Kumasi. However, we also understand that to increase our impact and make the program sustainable, partners like GES are critical. As a result, we are hoping this teacher’s training program is the first step to handing over ownership of our school programs to Ghana Education Service,” says Cordie Aziz-Nash, the founder and Executive Director of Environment360.
UNDP funded the challenge under its advocacy and awareness grant and believes this program has the ability to increase the number of students practicing sustainable waste management habits.
Prof Ramani and Friend in Need India created the educational material for the purpose of this programme, based on their on-the-ground experience on environmental education for sustainable development. That material has then been adapted for local use with the help of Environment360 and GES Accra District.
United Nations University-MERIT is the scientific partner of the programme. The participating researchers conduct the impact evaluation of the programme, to measure and assess the short- and long-term implications of this educational intervention on students’ knowledge and behaviour towards sustainable waste management and circular economy.
The Green Schools Academy is expected to be an annual program. It is anticipated that private organizations and sponsors will support the training program in order to cover the fees associated with the training of the teachers and the provision of the educational material to the schools.
Further collaborations with private schools will also be encouraged in the future.