Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland supports an Earth Charter project

For the first time ever, the Earth Charter will be introduced to the Finnish audience as part of a collaborative project. An EC Affiliate called Green Living Movement Suomi ry and the Earth Charter Finland network together with their partners successfully presented a project proposal to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and received approval for it.

The project is called “Earth, our home”, as stated in the Preamble of the Earth Charter. The project consists of a 16 panel exhibition that will travel through Finland during the year 2012. The project is training over 30 university aged students to become “Guides for Sustainable Development”. These youth are being trained in a virtual platform with the topics of the Earth Charter, sustainable development and project management.

In their home cities, the Guides for Sustainable Development will:

  • receive the exhibition to their cities and set it up,
  • advertise it widely,
  • organize and host the opening event with reputable speakers,
  • host an Earth Charter workshop for local organizations, institutions and municipality representatives, 
  • serve the visitors at the exhibition for 80 hours per month and guide audience through it,
  • report accurately the visit of the exhibition in their city on the projects website and the Earth Charter International´s Finnish page,
  • send the exhibition further to the next city.

The first exhibition was successfully launched in Helsinki, now the exhibition is currently set up in Lahti city.

The project will have its own website that will provide more information not only about the project and the exhibition itself, but more widely about the Earth Charter and the different tools that are available to implement the values and principles for sustainability into action. The visitors can also endorse the Earth Charter on the page in Finnish. The project team will translate several Earth Charter materials into Finnish language and publish them on the webpage.

The project has a part-time coordinator, but the majority of the work is done by a passionate group of volunteers. The project has a steering committee that consists of 10 volunteers that will be accountable for the project´s success. When calculating all the voluntary work together that is being done for this project, more than 8600 hours of volunteer work will be done for the Earth Charter in Finland during the year 2012! The budget approved from the Finnish Ministry for the project is over US$35,000.

The aim of the project is that people would live more sustainably and that the Earth Charter would be known and used as a tool for sustainability in Finland. After the year 2012 the exhibition can be loaned to be set up by the organizations, schools, institutions etc.

The partners of the project are:
The Green Cultural and Educational Centre, ViSiO
The National Union of University Students in Finland, SYL
Degree Programme in Sustainable Development, Turku University of Applied Sciences

More information: ec.suomi[@]gmail.com