Youth News Archives - Earth Charter

Global Village School and the Earth Charter

GVS students exploring the world

GVS is at the forefront of progressive, values-oriented education

Global Village School (GVS) is a fully accredited (WASC) international homeschool/private school hybrid founded in 1999. Our student-centered framework and emphasis on peace, justice, diversity, and sustainability set us apart. GVS collaborates with families around the globe to create engaging, creative, flexible, and personalized learning experiences. We adapt our homeschool curriculum to our students, empowering them to pursue their goals in a way that prepares them for their next steps in life, building on their strengths and talents while staying true to who they are. We help families nurture and protect the passion and enthusiasm for creating a better world that comes so naturally to many young people. Students learn what it means to lead authentic and meaningful lives; they leave GVS confident in their ability to make an impact on the world. As of mid-2019, we have worked with hundreds of families in 48 states and over 50 countries. Read about a few of our exceptional graduates here: www.globalvillageschool.org/our-graduates.html

The Synergy Between GVS & the Earth Charter

Founding Director Sally Carless recalls, “The Earth Charter is so very much in line with what GVS is about. When I first read it my reaction was, ‘Well. There it is. If everyone followed what’s in this document, then we and our planet would be ok.’” When we created the K-8 Whole Child, Healthy Planet curriculum guides in 2009, we saw an opportunity to articulate how the Earth Charter is aligned with Global Village School’s values while exposing the Charter to a wider audience (many families use the curriculum on their own, without enrolling). A copy is included in each guide, and resources and activities are linked to the core commitments of the Earth Charter: Respect & Care for the Community of Life, Ecological Integrity, Social & Economic Justice, and Democracy, Nonviolence, & Peace.

Meaningful content is great, but teaching doesn’t end there. Our educational philosophy guides teachers’ instruction and staff interactions with families. From the moment students enroll with GVS, they are treated with respect and encouraged to cultivate their spirits and passions to share with their communities. The guides engage students in ways that align with the spirit of the Earth Charter, as families are ushered through a broad exploration of the “pale blue dot,” with activities designed to invoke a sense of enchantment, wonder, and empathy as they explore art, music, nature, imagination, and story. These explorations help each family discover unique ways to be of service in our shared world.

The GVS high school program wasn’t written with the Earth Charter in mind, but it is very much aligned. Courses like Literature of Diversity, Planetary Stewardship, and History of Civil Rights in the U.S. are just a few examples. Global Citizenship concepts are also woven into courses that sound standard but are anything but. In Economics, high school students grapple with questions that provoke a dialogue on issues of social and economic justice: Students take a deep dive into the history of so-called “underdeveloped,” (really overexploited) countries, reckon with the ethics of consumerism, explore the design of international monetary policies, and examine the true costs market economies extract from our biosphere—from human happiness and potential, to natural resources, and our animal friends.

Sustainability is not just a value we consciously promote through our curriculum; it is one of the driving factors guiding the development of the school. From the beginning, our staff have worked part time in order to reserve energy to pursue personal passions and service work. The Earth Charter is a beautiful framework which naturally aligns with Global Village School. Through this synergistic relationship, we envision further development of a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world.

Global Village School: www.globalvillageschool.org

Global Village School

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Belgium primary school ‘De Sterrebloem’ endorses the Earth Charter

rotatedTo celebrate its 10-year anniversary, the primary experienced-based school ‘De Sterrebloem’ in Belgium organized an inspiration day on Sustainable Development on Sunday 28 April. Teacher Ellen de Dapper phrased it like this: ‘There is no greater present for the birthday of the Sterrebloem than an Earth where everyone has a good life, as well as the generations to come.’  The eighty participants experienced a try-out of the end of the world by eco-comedian Steven Vromman. At the same time their resilience for a hopeful future was tested. In the afternoon the participants started a dialogue among themselves and the planet. Issues like meaningful agriculture-education and deliberative democracy were discussed as answers for social challenges.

The children of the school created video messages to emphasize their environmental engagement and reminded the participants about the fact they only borrow the Earth from their children. Joren (8 years old) said: ‘Why do grown-ups treat the earth so bad? Don’t they understand they are part of it?’

The day ended by signing the endorsement of the Earth Charter through which the school reinforced their social responsibility. The school created a beautiful interpretation of the Earth Charter for the children and use it to actively put the Charter into action.

principles

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Open Enrollment “Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics” Online Youth Training Programme!

LSE earth charterApply now to participate in the next offering of our interactive and innovative Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics Online Youth Training Programme to be held from 07 October – 13 December 2019 for young people aged 18-30!

This training programme seeks to enhance young people’s skills and knowledge to be ethical sustainability leaders and implement Earth Charter-inspired projects, contributing towards a more sustainable and peaceful world.

By participating in this programme, you will have the opportunity to join a global network and support your fellow participants as you explore your role as a leader in your own community.

Participants will receive an Earth Charter International certificate as recognition of their successful completion and an invitation to become an Earth Charter Young Leader.

To ensure that we can build a sense of community among participants, space is limited. Early applications are encouraged.

Click here for application materials and more information about this programme.

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Youth Partnerships

Earth Charter Initiative Partners with FolkeCenter Chile

We are excited to announce our new partnership with Folkecenter Chile! Folkecenter, is an international NGO headquartered in Denmark now with two more offices in Africa and Chile. They have been working for a sustainable world with 100% renewable energies since 1983. Folkecenter Chile is located in Arica, Chile focused on giving workshops and trainings in green businesses, sustainable education, social reintegration and sustainable construction.

Click here to read more.

Earth Charter Initiative Partners with Greening Youth Foundation

We are excited to announce that we have partnered with Greening Youth Foundation (GYF) based in Atlanta, Georgia to amplify efforts with the mission and work of the Earth Charter Youth Network.  The Greening Youth Foundation’s mission is to work with diverse, underrepresented young adults across the US to develop and nurture sustainability leaders and environmental stewards. They do this through their environmental educational programme engaging local community members and working with land management agencies to provide internship opportunities for youth interested in conservation careers.

Click here to read more.

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Dominic Stucker’s Earth Charter Youth Story

Dominic Stucker, born in Germany and raised in the USA, was the Earth Charter Youth Coordinator from 2006-2009. He helped empower, engage, and expand the Earth Charter Youth Network through support of youth groups, online learning, youth in global governance, and intergenerational partnership for sustainability.

Dominic supported the expansion of EC Youth Groups to 70 countries, engaging youth from universities, schools, and social enterprises working in human rights and environmental topics. e-GLO, a semester-long, online course, linked young sustainability change agents around the world who were leading projects that integrated Earth Charter principles. Conducted three times with groups of about 20 people each, it empowered participants to share their stories of success broadly through digital media.

Dominic also sought out and created opportunities for youth participation in global governance processes, such as through the UN Commission on Sustainable Development, IUCN, and CIVICUS. He built an EC Youth Leadership Team through a democratic process of campaigning and voting, which identified a young woman and young man from 6 different regions around the world. He convened this team at the Center for Environment Education (CEE) in India to focus on how youth can bring a sustainability ethic into local projects, as well as global forums and processes.

During his time with Earth Charter and beyond, Dominic co-launched and developed the Intergenerational Partnership for Sustainability (IPS) in close collaboration with the Commission on Education and Communication (CEC) of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). IPS developed youth networks across all 6 IUCN Commissions, including getting young people onto many of their Steering Committees and Working Groups, as well as onto the IUCN Council. IPS took a leading role in promoting youth engagement and intergenerational partnership at the IUCN World Conservation Congresses in Barcelona in 2008 and in Jeju in 2012.

 

The Earth Charter continues to provide Dominic with an inspiring sustainability vision, both at the personal and systems levels. As Managing Partner with the Collective Leadership Institute, he now helps to build collaboration capacity for implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Dominic facilitates high quality, multi-sector dialogue and collaboration trainings for stakeholder systems around the world. He coaches diverse, multi-actor teams in designing and leading complex change processes for sustainability transformations. The need for collective leadership across sectors and generations for the Earth Charter vision of sustainability has never been greater!

For more information about his time at the Earth Charter watch his video below:

 

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Earth Charter Initiative Partners with FolkeCenter Chile

We are excited to announce our new partnership with Folkecenter Chile! Folkecenter, is an international NGO headquartered in Denmark now with two more offices in Africa and Chile. They have been working for a sustainable world with 100% renewable energies since 1983. Folkecenter Chile is located in Arica, Chile focused on giving workshops and trainings in green businesses, sustainable education, social reintegration and sustainable construction.

 
Earth Charter Youth, Elizabeth Ulloa and Nicole Ahumada, spearheaded the partnership in order to engage more Chilean youth with the Earth Charter. The partnership will seek to involve more youth from Arica in the Earth Charter Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics youth course, the Earth Charter Young Leaders Programme, and with the social media app, Mapting.

 
We are excited to contribute to increased youth engagement for a sustainable future in Arica, Chile! For more information please contact: YouthCoordinator@earthcharter.org

Folkecenter Chile LOGO GRANDE HORIZONTAL

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Earth Charter Initiative Partners with Greening Youth Foundation

We are excited to announce that we have partnered with Greening Youth Foundation (GYF) based in Atlanta, Georgia to amplify efforts with the mission and work of the Earth Charter Youth Network.  The Greening Youth Foundation’s mission is to work with diverse, underrepresented young adults across the US to develop and nurture sustainability leaders and environmental GYFstewards. They do this through their environmental educational programme engaging local community members and working with land management agencies to provide internship opportunities for youth interested in conservation careers.

 

This partnership will seek to involve more youth across the United States in the Earth Charter Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics youth course, the Earth Charter Young Leaders Programme, a yearly joint webinar, and with the social media app, Mapting.  We will also work towards providing opportunities for GYF youth in study abroad programmes and internships here at the Earth Charter Secretariat.

We are excited to contribute to increased youth engagement in the US for a sustainable future! For more information contact: Youthcoordinator@earthcharter.org

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ECYL Start-Up Creates Ecotutu: A Solar-Powered Food Storage For Farmers

According to the 2016 Rockefeller Foundation report titled ‘YieldWise: How the World Can Cut Food Waste’, in developing countries, refrigeration is both expensive and inaccessible for millions of farmers who live in rural areas and have per capita income of less than US$2 per day. Today, this problem still persists and leads to spoilage rates as high as 45% for fruits and vegetables, and a total loss of $4 billion dollars in Africa annually says Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Ecotutu™ Prototype Design © 2019

Ecotutu™ Prototype Design © 2019


The Nigerian start-up RenewDrive has developed a scalable solution to fix this gap and help keep fruits and vegetables more fresh for a longer time.

Agriculture is a major driver of Africa’s economy. A large part of the population lives from this industry, according to the ILO, 57 per cent of the population of sub-Saharan Africa is employed in agriculture. To put this in clearer perspective: more than half of the population work on smallholder farms or in families that operate subsistence farming. These two categories of farmers face major challenges in their day to day work – in particular the lack of sufficient storage facilities available for their crops, especially the ones that are perishable in nature. Lack of access to low-cost cooling solution prevents farmers from conveniently reaching end-markets. It deprives families of hard-earned money, and can lead to long term health and nutrition problems for the teeming population.

Greening Cold Chain To Cut Food Waste

The Global Opportunity Report of 2018 outlines recent advances in mobile refrigeration, for example the use of solar power, which is creating a revolution ‘that harnesses renewable energy to fix the broken cold chains’. To this end, Earth Charter Young Leader and Nigerian ecopreneur,  Babajide Oluwase , and his team at RenewDrive is pioneering a ‘pay-as-you-go’ (PAYG) storage service for fruit and vegetable farmers – combining low-cost, flexible payments option with solar-powered evaporation technology. It was initiated on the founders’ belief that PAYG model could create a leapfrog opportunity in energy access and address a huge market need – low-cost post-harvest storage. “By using solar energy we attempt to ‘green’ cold chains and make it very affordable for everyone” says Babajide.
To date, the team has conducted multiple iterations on product design, and field tests to prepare for eventual market entry by Q3 2019 in Nigeria. The managing team aims to expand across markets in Africa and Asia, with the ultimate goal of fixing the agricultural supply chain and provide low-cost storage access to 300,000 farmers by 2024.

For more information visit: https://www.facebook.com/renewdrive/

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Mapting Workshop with SERES’ Annual Youth Encounter for Sustainability

SERES, an organization that cultivates youth leaders to create sustainable communities in Central America, held a Mapting workshop for 46 young leaders from Guatemala and El Salvador during their Ninth Sustainability Youth Encounter. The Youth Encounter took place from 26 November- 1 December, 2018 and the theme of the meeting was migration as a transversal axis: “Migration or Transformation: highlighting the youth potential.”_DSC0384 1

The Annual Sustainability Youth Encounter is a space built to invite young people from Guatemala and El Salvador, who are implementing community action plans and exercising their citizen muscle, to a 4.5-day camp to strengthen their plans with new tools and knowledge, and develop their personal leadership through the construction of networks. During the Mapting workshop, the youth were able to learn more about the Sustainable Development Goals and how they relate to the Earth Charter Principles through the lens of social media.

 

Impressions from Participants

“I know a little bit about the SDGs, but the word MAPTING caught my attention, and I am pleased to share this platform with others since we can share a lot of information from my groups.”

“This app will help us as young people implementing many actions; it is a way to make our work known.”

“This is a tool that helps us meet people who are making changes at a global or community level.”

“It impresses me how we can be so far away and be able to see what changes there are in different countries of the world.”

We invite more organizations to share actions towards the Sustainable Development Goals in Mapting to expose their projects and to connect with other similar projects! To learn how to use Mapting, see our How-to-Use guide.

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Field Work, Responsibility, and the Earth Charter

Think of the place where you live in, the city you consider home. I’m sure that there are many positive things that you like: places, views, food, people. Now, if you had to think of a problem that this place is facing, what would it be and, what do you believe you could do to solve it?

 
This was the foundation of the exercise that was proposed to fifty students, between the ages of 16 and 18, of Colegio las Hayas located in Veracruz, Mexico. Many of their answers are part of common problems of every modern world city. Pollution, traffic jams, not enough social services, malnutrition in some sectors, inequality.

 
The following text, Field Work, Responsibility, and the Earth Charter (only available in Spanish), gathers the proposals made by these young minds that took the challenge of researching the problems of their choice, and designing a possible solution with three key elements. First, their knowledge and interest for the place they live in. Second, to propose their solution from the professional career they would like to study after graduating from high school. Third, to include the perspective of the Earth Charter, emphasizing at least one of its principles. The students created a written proposal in Spanish, and afterwards they made a translation to English with the idea of having more reach to their proposals and being able to connect with more people. Later, they explained their proposals in a brief video included at the end.

 
This project was carried out as a workshop to finish the “Leadership, Sustainability and Ethics” course given by the Earth Charter initiative that took place from January to June of 2018. The students not only put into practice academic skills learned throughout their school life, but also experienced the power to project themselves as active change agents in the transition of our societies into harmonios and inclusive communities with our environment.

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