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Activities of Young Agenda 21

(29.08.2007) Since its start in 2000, Young Agenda 21 has organised a number of activities related to awareness raising concerning the environment and development.

Here is a brief overview of activities:

2000:

  • International School Cooperation: One-day conference for teachers in the Rogaland region. A brochure about various school cooperation programs was produced and sent to most schools in the region.

2001:

  • Young Agenda 2001 conference: 500 children from 14 different countries attended the conference in Åsenhallen in Sola municipality. Activities included children's project exhibitions, workshops, fieldtrips, discussions with politicians and visits to local schools.
  • Synergi 21: National Norwegian conference on sustainability, held in Stavanger. Young Agenda 21 presented their work at an exhibition, and also organised various environment related activities with children:
    • "Will you become environmental-near" - a questions-and-answers game made by Solås school in Gjesdal municipality, where prominent persons from Rogaland could test their environmental skills
    • The Agenda letter: A letter of 70 meters' length, where children from the region had written their wishes and demands for a better environment, was presented to the Norwegian Minister of the Environment, Ms. Siri Bjerke.

2002:

  • "Stavanger Green Children's City": Young Agenda 21 coordinated this project, which had been initiated by Inky's Eco Detectives. An activity day for the environment was organised with children in every local community of Stavanger (7 in all), including environmental marches, clean-up activities, launching of new rowing boats and others. On World Environment Day, 5 June, a document with the children's ideas and demands for an environmentally friendly future was presented to Mr. Olav Stav, head of the Environment Department in the City of Stavanger.
  • ICC 2002, International Children's Conference on the Environment: This conference, organised by the United Nations Environment Programme UNEP, was held in Victoria B.C., Canada. Young Agenda 21 attended with 4 children and a teacher from Stavanger. This was the first meeting with UNEP, where the idea to host their children's conference in Stavanger was discussed and a letter of intention from Stavanger's mayor was presented.

2003:

  • Young Agenda 2003 conference: 600 children from 20 different countries participated. The conference was again held at Åsenhallen in Sola. The program included the same activities as in 2001, plus a football match with players from Stavanger's Premier League team, Viking. The UN Year of freshwater was marked by a speech of UNEP advisor Mr. Tore Brevik.
  • International Week: this event was organised in Stavanger by the UN Association in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Young Agenda 21 focused on World Environment Day with a performance about the right to have clean drinking water.
  • The North Sea Sail Event: Leaders of the Lutheran church from all over Europe sailed along the Norwegian coast from Stavanger to Trondheim, to attend the European Church Council. Before start, some Stavanger children met with the leaders, gave a speech and presented a gift to His All Holiness Bartholomeus II, the head of the Greek-orthodox church. The gift was a mobile with paper birds, a Japanese symbol for peace.

2004:

  • Eco Schools: Young Agenda 21 initiated a project to encourage local schools to become certified as "Eco schools". Six schools took part: Iglemyr, Figgjo, Austrått and Høyland schools in Sandnes, and Røyneberg and Storevarden schools in Sola. The schools were invited to group meetings and lectures to get new ideas for their environmental activities, and they were all visited by the project leader. During the 2-years period of the project, four of the six schools became certified as Eco Schools, which qualifies them to fly the Green Flag. More information about Eco Schools at www.fee-international.org.
  • ICC 2004, International Children's Conference on the Environment: Young Agenda 21 attended this UNEP conference in New London, Connecticut, USA. Before this event we had sent our bid to host the 2008 conference to UNEP, and we took the occasion to discuss the proposal with a number of supportive persons. Among them was the staff of the Norwegian UN Embassy in New York City.
  • International Week: This event was, like the year before, organised by the UN Agency and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Young Agenda 21 gathered children who inspired other children by presenting their environmental activities and their international connections.

2005:

  • Young Agenda 2005: At this conference, 33 different countries were represented by 500 delegats. A guest of honour was Mr. Wondy Asnake from UNEP's Regional Office for Europe, who announced Young Agenda 21 as local host of the 2008 Tunza conference.
  • Eco Schools: The project continued with gatherings for teachers for mutual inspiration, and with visits to all participating schools. The first two schools were awarded with the Green Flag.
  • Children's World Summit: The UN International Children's Conference was held in Nagoya, Japan, along with the Expo World Exhibition. Young Agenda 21 was represented by the chair and a member of the board, and they discussed the Tunza 2008 conference with UNEP's representatives.

2006:

  • Eco Schools: The project was terminated in the middle of 2006. Four schools had then been awarded with the Green Flag. They had focused a lot on waste handling and separation, composting, and greening of their school yards. In order to keep the Green Flag, they must keep up their work and run at least one new environmental project per year.
  • Green schoolyards: A one-day conference was held for teachers, landscape architects, city planners and others. Speakers from Great Britain, Germany, Oslo and Stavanger inspired the audience of about 70 persons. Cooperation partners were Green Living, the County Counsellor of Rogaland and the City of Stavanger.
  • Tunza 2006: UNEP held their children's conference in Putrajaya, Malaysia, and a group of 6 children and 4 adults from Norway attended, coordinated by Young Agenda 21. The children came from the Stavanger region and from Trondheim. They all candidated for a Junior Board membership, and four were elected, along with 8 other kids from all continents. The Junior Board is actively involved in planning the Tunza 2008 conference in Stavanger, Norway.

2007:

  • Tunza 2008: Preparations for this large conference, which will take place in June 2008, have been ongoing all year. These include fundraising, planning of program, logistics, registrations etc. Young Agenda 21 cooperates closely with the United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP, for this conference.
  • Preparatory conference in Cameroon: UNEP held a conference in July/August with delegates from most African countries. They learnt about the specific environmental challenges of the continent. Some of the children will attend Tunza 2008 and present their projects. Young Agenda 21 was a major sponsor of the conference and brought a delegation of 8 children and 6 adults, including the chair of the board and the manager of the foundation. The Norwegian delegates represented local communities who have friendship ties with African communities. They came from Re in Vestfold, Marker in Østfold, Stor-Elvdal in Hedmark and Haugesund in Rogaland.