Earth Charter presented in Mediterranean youth seminar

14. Integrate into formal education and life-long learning the knowledge, values, and skills needed for a sustainable way of life.

a. Provide all, especially children and youth, with educational opportunities that empower them to contribute actively to sustainable development.

Mr. Melhem Mansour, e-GLO 2 alumni from Syria, presented the Earth Charter in Our White Sea II: Networking for Sustainable Development -seminar. This was organized in Malta, October 27-31, 2010, for youth NGOs across Europe and Mediterranean countries and hosted by the Euro-Mediterranean Youth Platform. The seminar focused on the role of young people and youth organizations in the sphere of sustainable development.

The participants came from different countries in the Mediterranean region: Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Palestine, Egypt, Lebanon, Malta and Tunisia. In addition UK was represented.

Mr. Mansour contributed to this seminar by writing an article to be published in the annual Euro-Med Youth Platform Magazine. This article discussed the importance of investment in youth potentials towards sustainable development.

In addition to that, Mr. Mansour presented The United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) and the role of non-formal education and the Earth Charter in this youth seminar.  He specifically emphasized the link between the Earth Charter and education for sustainable development.

Mr. Mansour was also able to inform the participants about the youth opportunities within the Earth Charter youth network, such as e-GLO. One of the seminar participants from Egypt, Mirette Bahgat, had taken part in the Earth Charter International’s short course on Youth Leadership, Sustainability and Ethics and she was able to go through the EC website and explain to the workshop what resources and information is available regarding the ESD and Earth Charter.

“We need to take every opportunity to promote the Earth Charter” says Mr. Mansour, and adds that “even if we are doing this task voluntarily, and have to take some days off from our work, we do it because we believe in the Earth Charter and feel responsible to spread the word on it. The Earth Charter is our mission!”

Mr. Mansour is the first person promoting the Earth Charter in Syria and thanks to him, now many NGOs are interested to learn about it, such as MASAR and Syrian Entrepreneurs Association.