BirdLife Zimbabwe runs an exciting environmental education and awareness programme for schools. BirdLife Zimbabwe seeks, among other goals, to influence the appreciation of birds and their habitats, promote sustainable use of natural resources and enhance environmental conservation by using birds as indicators for biodiversity conservation. The environmental education and awareness programme was initiated in 1998 as a Bird Awareness Programme (BAP). This programme offers various projects aimed at raising awareness on the conservation of birds and environmental management in schools throughout the country. In recent years BLZ has been working to link the Environmental clubs in Zimbabwe to clubs in Africa and the rest of the world. This was done under the banner of ‘Wildlife Clubs of Africa.’
Schools that are part of the Bird Awareness programme take part in some of the following activitie :
• Commemoration of Environmental Days such as World Migratory Bird Day, World Wetlands Day,
World Environment Day. The purpose of these commemorations is to raise awareness of the importance of environmental issues.
• Bird walks within the school premises and other places. The current focus is to assist school children to identify birds within their
school surrounds. Migrants have arrived and it is interesting to show children these summer visitors.
• Bird Festivals and quizzes
• Greening the schools by planting trees, shrubs and flowers
Hopefully by ‘catching them young’ the school kids can grow up to responsible citizens in terms of biodiversity conservation. For more information contact Fadzai Matsvimbo at Fadzai@blz.co.zw.