Submitted by: Natural History museum of Latvia
Implemented country: Latvia
Title: Latvian Natural History Museum Offers Environmental Education and Green Knowledge Transfer
Why is the Latvian population not interested in the environment very much? Lana Saksone, who works for the Natural History Museum, decided to find an answer to this question and she finally found out that a lack of available knowledge concerning current environmental questions was the reason why so many people are often disinterested in the environment.
The museum decided to focus on the target group of 17- to 22-year-olds, a dynamic group of people who will soon have to make important decisions concerning their future schooling and work. This is why special programs for schools were developed by the museum that support teachers with educational materials. Interactive exhibits were designed as well. Important issues such as ecology, sustainability, climate change, biochemical cycles and environmental pollution are discussed. This project is the first one to interactively display facts of modern technology, at the same time functioning as an informal environmental education program. A budget of 300,000 euros will have to suffice to attract 100,000 visitors annually.
In order to keep the inhibition threshold as low as possible, visitors are refunded their travel expenses to the museum. 90 per cent of students in the region as well as 40 per cent of students from poorer regions in Latvia have benefitted from the program.
Project manager Lana Saksone is proud to be the organizer of this program. Despite a very tight schedule, much red tape, and rigorous financial control mechanisms she is a fighter -- like the other members of her family: Cactuses who have always managed to somehow get some water.
“La vita è bella.”