Since its establishment, the IUCN Member FPWC (Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets) has focused on raising public awareness on environmental issues and stimulating open discussions, in order to help develop creative solutions for environmental problems both in Armenia and the whole Caucasus region. This idea lies behind the biennial SunChild International Environmental Festival organized by the FPWC since 2007, which is also the only environmental festival in the entire South Caucasus region. The 2013 edition is currently being organized.
The first SunChild Environmental Festival was organized to establish a platform for intercultural exchange and cooperation on environmental issues. Since environmental education of the young generation is one of the most crucial factors for the care of nature and environment, the festival has many exhibitions and environmental activities targeted for children and young adults.
In October 2013, the fourth edition of SunChild International Environmental Festival will take place and this time the festival will reinvent itself. It will take up the challenge to increase the number of people reached with the festival programme and at the same time decrease the event’s ecological footprint. The solution is a “virtual” SunChild Festival utilizing Armenian TV channels and Web TV as the venue for film screenings combined with public panel discussions. Alongside, three key events will take place in Yerevan– the Animal Carnival Parade, the Festival Award Ceremony and a Wildlife/Nature photo exhibition featuring the results of a photo contest organized by FPWC.
The new innovative festival format is not only a much “greener” approach but it also offers for the first time the chance to reach the average Armenian TV viewer who actually would never visit the festival in person. Additionally, SunChild Festival 2013 will contribute to a new media culture in Armenia, since TV broadcastings of high quality films focusing on nature and environment is absolutely new for the country. Therefore involving TV channels, private and public, will be a huge step forward in the field of free access to environmental information for all the citizens of the country.