World Wetlands Day in Portugal
Instituto da Conservação da Natureza
World Wetlands Day
2 February 2007 Week of Events
27th January to 4th February
REPORT OF ACTIVITIES
World Wetlands Day, at the 2nd of February, was once again celebrated in Portugal. This year the activities extended during the week from the 27th of January until the 4th of February, in a coordinated way to make sure that wetlands were remembered every day.
The events took place in different locations throughout the country, including 15 of the 17 designated Ramsar Sites, as well as in several other wetlands in the continent and in Azores. The setting up of this week of celebrations involved not only the Ramsar Administrative Authority (ICN), but also in variety of entities as non-governmental organizations, schools, libraries and municipalities, in a participatory process new in this occasion.
The slogan for WWD2007 was 'Fish for Tomorrow?', with reference to fisheries as a wetlands' value to human populations that rely on fish for survival, and as an economic activity carried out in equilibrium with the ecosystem. This subject was addressed through workshops for folding and painting the Ramsar do-it-yourself paper fish, expositions, debates and the Ramsar multimedia animation.
Nevertheless, there were other activities dedicated to general subjects regarding wetlands conservation and other centred at a particular site. These included walking and biking tours, photographs hunting, geology safaris, guided tours, litter collecting, expositions, exhibition of films and slides, workshops, training courses, colloquium, debates, seminars, signing of protocols and distribution of leaflets.
The public age ranged from 4 to 90 years old. The promotion of the events was achieved though a press note sent to the national and local press, the internet, leaflets and posters. The number of participants exceeded 3000 people, and the levels of participation were higher when actions meant a specific public.
In general terms, we consider that the objectives were achieved. The message of wetlands conservation and wise use was passed on, especially in what fisheries was concerned. There was a positive movement from the entities directly or indirectly involved in wetlands management, and even from other with an important role in public information, awareness and education to sustainable development. Future projects, partnerships and protocols were planned and several of the institutions present at the events showed their interest in participating in other similar occasions.
Wetlands have Won!