World Wetlands Day 2003: Georgia
World Wetlands Day 2003 - west Georgia
For World Wetlands Day 2003, the Greens Movement of Georgia (Friends of the Earth Georgia, FoE-Georgia) has elaborated the project plan aiming at:
raising public awareness about importance of wetlands and their protection;
propaganda of Ramsar Convention principles;
strengthening local NGO capacity towards protection of Kolkheti Wetlands.
To achieve the above aims the seminars have been planned in 3 regions of West Georgia: Lanchkhuti, Senaki and Poti. Seminar materials were mainly developed for young population and were based on the materials received especially for this day from Ramsar Bureau and Integrated Coastal Zone Management Center (ICZM, Tbilisi; Mr. Mamuka Gvilava). The information package contained the following materials:
Posters (English posters received from Ramsar Bureau and Georgian ones from ICZM);
Stickers about World Wetlands Day and Kolkheti National Park developed by ICZM;
Leaflet, developed by FoE-Georgia.
During the seminars were used 2 video-films:
Wetlands, water and sustainability (received from Ramsar Bureau and translated into Georgian);
About the coastal zone of Georgia and Kolkheti wetlands (FoE-Georgia video library)
To ensure closer involvement of audience, the seminars had interactive characters.
The working group for the seminars consisted of two persons: Mr. Irakli Guledani, Head of Eco-education team of FoE-Georgia and Mr. Giorgi Lebanidze, member of FoE-Georgia. Small funding for travel and accommodation was provided from the ICZM Center that was very much impressed with the activities, FoE-Georgia has planned.
The first seminar was organized on January 31 in the village Nigoiti of Lanchkhuti Region. Seminar was organized in Nigoiti school and was attended by the pupils, teachers and interested public, totalling about 40-45 people.
During the seminar were discussed the issues related to the importance of wetlands and the need for their protection. Also the aspects of public rights regarding access to environmental information and justice were discussed. In addition, the audience was provided with the information about the activities of the ICZM project. The films and information materials won great interest among the children.
The second seminar was organized on February 1 in Senaki first gymnasium. The seminar was attended by the pupils, teachers, representatives of local government, NGOs and mass-media, totalling about 55-60 people.
After this the working group moved to Poti where two more seminars were organized. One was organized on February 2 in the administration building of Poti. This seminar was attended by the representatives of local administration, NGOs and mass-media. This seminar was attended by the representatives of Kolkheti National Park as well.
Another seminar was organized on February 4 in the first lyceum of Poti. This seminar was attended by the pupils and students of Poti, totalling about 50 people.
Both seminars were widely covered by local media and the TV-company “PHAZISI”.
Report by George Magradze, International Coordinator of the Greens Movement of Georgia (email@example.com)