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Climate Change Camps For Children

Case Study:

Climate Change Camps For Children

Background

The EPA and M Co., in collaboration with the Eastern and Midlands CARO and Kildare County Council, facilitated a workshop at Solas Bhríde, Kildare Town, on climate impacts/issues local to County Kildare and potential solutions/initiatives which could be considered as part of the rollout of the National Dialogue on Climate Action. This workshop was attended by representatives from local business communities, local voluntary and community organisations, local authority staff, the Eastern and Midlands CARO, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, and climate action NGOs. At this workshop, engagement with young people was discussed and one of the initiatives suggested was a climate camp, which could be run over the summer holidays to educate young people about climate change in a positive, fun and interactive way. The Eastern and Midlands CARO, Kildare County Council, The Irish National Stud & Japanese Gardens, Kildare Tidy Towns, The Hive Youth Hub, and Met Éireann, together with the EPA & M Co., worked together to facilitate a Climate Camp for 11-14 year olds, hosted at the Irish National Stud in Kildare over three days in July 2019, with a total of 30 participants.
 

Solution

Day 1 focused on weather and climate, facilitated by Met Éireann. It included presentations to and discussion with the participants about the various components of weather and climate, as well as the setting up of a mobile weather station, which was monitored over the three days of the camp.

Day 2 focused on biodiversity (including ecosystem mapping) and climate change adaptation measures, both locally and nationally. The day was facilitated by Dr. Mary O’ Connor, ecologist and Chairperson of Kildare Tidy Towns, and by Paul Regan from the Eastern and Midlands CARO, who used the Kildare County Council Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and National Climate Action Plan for reference.

Day 3 included presentations and interactive games dealing with climate change, the Sustainable Development Goals and the positive climate actions that individuals can take. The first part of the day was facilitated by Marianne Creyf, Cool Planet Champion, and Sorcha O’Neill, a local climate ambassador. At the end of the third day, participants presented to a panel of elected members from the Kildare/Newbridge Municipal District and Kildare County Council’s Director of Service for Environmental and Water Services, on what they believe the urgent issues are, based on what they learned over the three days. They also discussed their solutions/ideas and had an opportunity to ask questions and discuss with the panel what the local authority and its elected members can and are doing about climate change (Figure 1).
 

Benefits of solution

Social
The camp represented collaboration between local business, the local authority, local community, and voluntary and State organisations, who pooled their resources and worked together to facilitate engagement of young people, helping to educate them about climate change, how it can impact at global and local levels, and their contribution to the impacts/solutions, in a positive, interactive and fun way.


Figure 1: Children’s drawings, climate action camp.
 

Project Details:

A summary of the camp, lessons learned, a resource template and further photographs will be available to share in Q3/Q4 2019.
Local authority project contact
Claire Moran
Eastern & Midlands CARO