For problems such as the environmental crisis, we become part of the problem if we don’t contribute in finding the solution. Volunteering, the offer of personal energy and time to protect the environment is the most effective form of participation to the public good. We can all get organized, or participate into volunteering actions for the environment, by tracking the priorities in our region and by taking action, by stating that there is one planet, one world, one goal!
Hundreds of volunteering actions in the whole of Greece give us the opportunity to participate. The Ministry aims to encourage local societies and NGOs to develop co-operations and take initiatives for organising environmental actions.
“Green Action-Clean Forests”
The Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climate Change has set as one of the main priorities, the realization of actions that aim at protecting and safeguarding biodiversity in our country.
In this direction, the initiative “Green Action-Clean Forests” offers the opportunity to citizens to contribute actively into actions of voluntary service and simultaneously, encourages local communities to develop co-operations, as well as to take initiatives for organising environmental actions.
With the motto “Green Action-Clean Forests” we organized in April and May, the cleaning of forests of the National Park of Schinia-Marathon in Attica and in forestall paths on the island of Skopelos.
Action for the cleaning of the pinewood of Schinias
From April 25th to 27th, three days of voluntary offer for the rebirth of the pinewood forest and the enhancement of environmental sensibilisation, took place at the National park of Schinias – Marathon.
The Ministry’s goal was the encouragement of cooperation and the creation of a fertile ground, which will lead to the closer cooperation between the local authorities, citizens and NGOs for the protection of forests.
The contribution of the educational community and the cooperation with the department of Environmental Education of the Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning and Religion, was very important. In this event, 700 students participated, along with 41 teachers of primary and secondary education, representing 19 schools of Athens. The students took part in the forest cleaning and were also given the opportunity to participate actively in educational programs and activities of 17 voluntary organisations. These activities, gave also the opportunity to students to discover the forest, through games, research, handicrafts etc.
The action was embraced by about 60 voluntary organisations involved with the protection of forests, the sea, and with environmental, educational and cultural programs. They participated actively with numerous volunteers, as well as with volunteers from the Municipality of Marathon and Nea Makri and individuals. In total there were around 1300 attentees. The Ministry’s project was organized with the support of the Management Body of Schinias – Marathon National Park, the Forest Service of Kapandriti and the NGO “ELIX – Conservation Volunteers Greece”.
Action for the cleaning of forestall paths on the island of Skopelos
The campaign of sensibilisation and forest cleaning took place in selected forestall paths on the island with the participation of 800 volunteers and students.
The cleaning program began on May 7th, lasted four days and had as a goal the mobilization of local communities and NGOs from Skopelos and the neighboring Skiathos. The volunteers removed dry leaves and garbage from the paths contributing this way to the opening of the forest paths. At the same time, students discovered and cleaned up an old, small path (kalderimi) outside village Glossa, in Palio Klima area.
Through forest cleaning, the natural rebirth of the forest is accomplished; the danger of a fire being spread is decreased and trekking tourism is reinforced. The local community of Skopelos embraced warmly the initiative and recognized the value of volunteering. Because of the numerous attendance, the program was enriched with the cleaning of four more paths, not included in the original planning!
This action came into force in cooperation with the Department of Environmental Education of the Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning and Religion. Employees of the local authorities, of the Fire Department and of the Management Body of Alonnissos Northern Sporades National Marine Park made a significant contribution to the outcome of the project. In addition, numerous students and teachers from the primary and secondary Education from all of the island’s schools participated with great enthusiasm. The project was warmly welcomed by all participants, and also produced thoughts for ideas and proposals for the development of new actions in the future.