Young Conservationists come together for the Ek Prithvi Panda Fest 2020
New Delhi: Over 60 students came together at the WWF India New Delhi office to participate in the national level Panda Fest from 6- 7 February 2020. The Panda Fest is a celebration of the Ek Prithvi programme, the flagship initiative of the education programme of WWF-India and brings together students from across the country, giving them a platform to interact with each other and share best practices adopted by them and their schools under the aegis of the programme. The event was attended by the Chief Guest, Mr B. K Singh, Commissioner Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti and the Guest of Honour, Ms Gayatri Raghawa, Senior Consultant UNEP.
Ek Prithvi is WWF F-India & environment education initiative with the Government school system to help Build Conservation Leadership. Launched in 2016 with 8 schools and 800 students in Ladakh, the programme now includes over 145,000 students across 206 schools in 10 states and 2 union territories in India. The programme also includes schools from forests and Protected Areas in India, helping children, teachers and local communities become stewards of conservation and undertake initiatives to help protect these areas and the biodiversity in encompasses.
The Panda Fest saw the representation of over 60 students and 14 teachers from 30 schools across the 10 states and 2 UTs this year. The Ek Prithvi programme is a holistic learning experience for children to adopt pro-conservation attitude and sustainable practices. Eco-trails and outdoor activities are an integral part of the programme to enhance knowledge and action competence. The first day of the Panda Fest thus kick-started with an Eco-trail at the Lodhi Gardens, followed by tree tagging by the children. The children then participated in a design thinking workshop for conservation where they pledged to become environmentally conscious in their everyday
Speaking at the event, Ms Radhika Suri, Director, Environment Education, WWF India, said “Nature The Ek Prithvi programme aims to not just work with the education system and integrate environmental education as an integral part of learning, but empower children to become agents of change in their own communities. We believe that an initiative like this will go a long way in creating an entire generation of conservation leaders who will help build a sustainable future for our planet and people.” We at WWF-India believe in children as the leaders for the environment who have the potential to lead the way into a sustainable future.”
The day two of the event started with the Ek Prithvi anthem, followed by the Annual Ek Prithvi report and a live radio show with students and the audience. The students then presented their work through a walk through the exhibition. The event culminated with an award ceremony to recognize the schools for their exceptional work done over the year.