Earth Charter awareness session in Burundi

The RCP (Réseau des Citoyens Probes), an ECI Affiliate in Burundi, organized the first information dissemination session about the Earth Charter in this country on December 19th, 2012.

The activity was held at the headquarters of the Reinforcement of Civil Society Forum (FORSC), an umbrella organization for civil society in Burundi. Eleven people attended the event, among them three journalists.

In his introduction, Mr. Vital Nshimirimana, President of RCP, talked about the history of the Earth Charter, its drafting process, and its recognition today as an important educational tool for sustainable development.

He also explained what the Earth Charter Initiative is and what the affiliation of RCP to the Earth Charter International means.

Some questions were raised on the relevance and the added value of the Earth Charter to existing international instruments regarding human rights, governance, environment, education, and gender, among others.

There were also questions about the impact of the Earth Charter in the national context in Burundi and how the RCP will integrate the Earth Charter Principles in its activities.

Answers were provided using the guidelines available at the Earth Charter Web site and different publications that explain the content of the Earth Charter and its significance for different groups. It was recommended, nonetheless, to organize more information sessions and to involve the media and government officials.

Although it was not possible to have more people participating, mostly because the meeting was held during working hours, one radio station (CCIB FM+) and an online journal (Net Press) reported on the event.

Find in this link the news report from Net Press (in French).