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Education starts at home – reduce, reuse, recycle

2015-08-18 14:36:16

Peter Milne, an international environmental education consultant and trainer, shares his views on how parents and their kids can do their part to protect Mother Earth. He says it might surprise some that it is often the kids who are driving change at home.

“Very often it is the children who educate the parents about keeping Dubai clean and green as a result of awareness through school initiatives and activities that are then passed on at home,” says Peter.

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“So the first thing parents can do is to listen to their children when it comes to ideas about looking after the environment and be consistent in their approach. If, for example, a school has a recycling programme, then it is important that this happens at home as well, so that the children are getting the same message.”

“Talking the talk and then walking the walk is key to being green. Parents, when they take their children shopping, should use reusable bags and reduce the amount of packaging they buy. They can involve their children in the process of sorting and recycling their waste at home and teach the children about the importance of reducing waste; in particular, not wasting food.

“People need to be aware of the impact waste has on the environment and that no matter where we come from, we have a responsibility to do our part. Quite often it can be a disconnection with nature through living in a city that makes it difficult to understand that impact. One solution is to take children out to explore the deserts and wadis, teach about the wildlife and explain that many animals, especially camels, die through eating plastic that we dump carelessly or do not sort correctly.

“At the end of the day, parents are guardians of their children’s lives. Through the right actions and the right guidance, their lives and their futures and the futures of generations beyond can be guarded safely.

“It is a personal approach to doing the right thing that will really make a difference, but it starts with an awareness and a desire to take that path.

Peter recently spoke at the World Environmental Education Congress in Gothenburg, Sweden. He has his own environmental awareness initiative, Target Green. Visit target-akhdar.com to find out more