About the project
Ten project partners from nine countries throughout Europe have developed the ‘Planet Friendly Schools’ website. It offers online resources and examples of best practice to teachers, communities, NGO staff and any other individuals involved in delivering climate change and environmental education projects in schools.
Our project seeks to inspire people to be the change they want to see. Our online e-learning platform shares best practice from across the 9 partnership countries on how we can all make small changes in our lifestyles to help combat climate change and environmental damage. The project partners are a mix of environmental NGOs, universities, Vocation and Education Training (VET) bodies, and change-makers that are all engaged in finding, sharing and multiplying practical solutions to the environmental issues that face us today.
Climate change and environmental issues are affecting all of us. In the face of the huge global crisis we see in the media, many people feel powerless to act and make a difference. Greta Thunberg has become the focus of a young individual trying to make a difference, and we want to harness this interest amongst children to help enable them to act. The IPCC and campaigns such as Extinction Rebellion both reflect and instil concern amongst the public, but are often directed at governmental level change, rather than the positive behavioural changes we can all make as individuals and organisations. Food is a key focus of environmental damage and climate change (food production accounts for around 25% of greenhouse gas emissions), and it is an area in which we can all play a positive role. Greta Thunberg has shown there is a huge concern amongst young people. Our project will help empower schools, together with the communities they serve, to become factors of change though more sustainable food choices and greener consumption habits.
Three key objectives:
Sharing innovation and best practice examples
The project partners have researched and distilled the inspiring planet-friendly food projects in each country that others can learn from. These may then be replicated by schools in other countries, and promoted to a wider audience across the EU.
Inspire and empower our target groups to make change through small practical steps.
The project provides the opportunity to trickle-down best practice and innovation to schools and change-makers on the ground. This provides an opportunity to promote innovative ideas across the nine partnership countries and beyond.
Multiplying practical solutions
The website allows us to make the best practice examples easily accessible in today’s digital society, creating filmed case studies and a dynamic website platform to enable easy browsing and sharing.
People are usually willing to make small sustainable changes to their lifestyles, but often need to be shown the ideas and be inspired to take part. The growth of recycling of packaging and avoiding plastic carrier bags is an example of how people have embraced a new sustainable habit, once the concept has been embedded in society. Likewise, people are buying more local food to reduce food miles; choosing organic produce for environmental and health reasons; eating less meat and more plant-based diets. The project is based on the premise that small individual changes can make a big difference when multiplied by a large number of people. Like throwing a pebble into the pond, the ripples will move out and influence a wider group of people.
The best-practice resources will cover the core themes of:
- in-school projects (these may include growing healthy snacks in the school grounds for the tuck shop to reduce food miles, reducing food waste, or drinking tap-water instead of bottled/fizzy drinks to save on plastic waste)
- school-community projects (these may include grandparent gardening projects to link younger and older generations to share skills, or linking the canteen to local food producers to procure local produce)
- multiplier projects (these may be regional or national eco-school, forest school or GO/municipality led food projects that schools can engage with to multiply their efforts)