This report on educational activities marking World Environment Day comes from CEC member Patrick Shawa of the IUCN member organization Wildlife & Environmental Conservation Society of Zambia.
Saturday 5th June 2010, the Lusaka East Forest Reserve Number 27 was filled with a hive ofactivities. A fleet of buses and cars was seen heading East on Lusaka’s Leopards Hill Road, all heading to this reserve. This was not an ordinary trip, but an education and awareness trip to commemorate the 2010 World Environment Day.
The Wildlife and Environmental Conservation Society of Zambia (WECSZ) opted to use the Lusaka East Forest Reserve Number 27 to enable people become better acquainted with issues that are affecting biodiversity right in our own backyard.
Lusaka East Forest Reserve No. 27 is the only public protected area and large natural green space in the immediate proximity of Zambia’s capital city, Lusaka.
The activity focused on species identication to emphasis on the importance of each and every species on earth. Participants were mainly school-going children with their teachers, divided into four main groups: (1) Mammals – Insects (2) Reptiles – Amphibians - Fishes (3) Flowers – Trees – Grasses and (4) Birds. Crosscutting issues such as climate change, pollution, waste disposal and HIV/AIDS were also looked at.
Wildlife Guides and other information materials were provided to help the groups in their work. After the research, each group made a presentation on their findings.