Every year thousands of Viet Nam’s people take their turn at tackling some of the nation’s most pressing conservation issues, as part of the “Environment and Development” competition sponsored by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), Voice of Viet Nam (VOV) and IUCN VN.
On June 3, top contestants in this year’s event received awards and recognition for the practical ideas and action plans they had submitted around the theme of “Climate Change and Environment Friendly Behavior.”
Since 2005, MONRE and VOV have run the competition, with judging and financial support from IUCN, to create a bridge between government agencies working on the environment and the public.
All citizens aged 15 and up are encouraged to propose actionable initiatives on a given environmental theme, in an effort to stimulate greater public discussion and participation in national conservation issues.
The 2008 contest received about 5,500 entries from all three of Viet Nam’s regions. Participants competed for monthly prizes throughout the year, and the ten best works from each month advanced to the overall annual competition.
With an initiative entitled “the network of friendly environmental protection,” author Pham Hong Diep won the 20 million VND first prize for the year. Vice Minister of MONRE, Mr. Nguyen Van Duc, bestowed his prize, as well as those for the three people who received a second place prize, the five people at third place, and 10 fourth place winners, who all won further monetary prizes in descending amounts.
The winners also were recognized at an awards ceremony timed to fall on the same week as the United Nations World Environment Day.
The competition sponsors announced the details of the 2009 contest, which will focus on climate change adaptation strategies. MONRE will head the selection of winning entries, and will accept submissions from June 10, 2009 to April 30, 2010.
IUCN will help to publicize some of the best ideas submitted to encourage the public to integrate suggested actions into their daily lives. VOV will post selected entries on its web site.