Delegation of the German Earth Charter Youth Initiative at the UNESCO World Conference on ESD

Insa Lütge has been interning in Germany with Michael Slaby, EC coordinator on Religion and Sustainability, since September 2008. The aim of her internship is to make the Earth Charter known among youth in Germany and create a German Earth Charter Youth Network. In addition, she has been involved with a German Earth Charter Affiliate, Ecumenical One World Initiative.

The main part of her work was and is to help prepare and follow-up the Youth conference on education for sustainable development “Vision-Values-Action” that was held in January 2009. 145 youth from 32 countries participated and shared their views about the priorities for the next five years of the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. You can check-out two conference videos that have been posted on YouTube from here and here.  

During this conference, the Earth Charter youth network in Germany was launched in an informal meeting of around 25 interested youth that now stay connected through an e-mail listserv and also an online forum. A first ECYG has been created in the city of Eckernförde at the Baltic Sea. These are fantastic achievements!  

Insa’s upcoming projects include a two-day Earth Charter Youth Workshop in early May and a creation of a tool-kit / starter package for ECYGs in Germany.
But now to Insa’s report – thank you Insa for writing it, and for everything you have done!



From March, 31st to April, 2nd the UNESCO is holding a Conference on Education for Sustainable Development to evaluate the first half of the UNESCO Decade on ESD in Bonn, Germany.

In Preparation of this meeting the German affiliate of the Earth Charter, the Ecumenical One World Initiative, together with the Catholic Social Institute in Bad Honnef and the World Future Council organized a youth future forum where 140 young people from over 30 countries discussed the key visions, values and actions that are needed for a successful Education on Sustainable Development, at the end of January in Bad Honnef.

As delegates from this Future Forum we, a group of eight young people from Germany, The Netherlands and Norway, had the chance to observe the UNESCO World Conference on ESD. While there where no possibilities for us to take an active part it was still interesting to listen to the panel discussions and we had the chance to interview several of the participants regarding their views on Education on Sustainable Development and the progress of the conference. They felt the urgent need to take action and emphasized the importance of networking and a youth that takes initiative.

Our first impression is surprisingly positive and we hope that there will be a concrete result of the conference leading to a successful second term of the UNDecade based on the ethical framework of the Earth Charter.

Tobias Orthen interviewing Ousmane Blondin Diop from Senegal