Transmitting these messages and awareness to the younger generation is wise a prevention which is preferable than cure.We mobilise children in the course of education to try to change thier vision of the environment and give them a new notion about the various elements of the environment. Education according to W.P.E is at the base of any change and modification of attitude towards something, this is why our combat on the environmental protection give the priority to education. Education thus remains our most outstanding means to get the message go round the population starting from the pupils, students and teachers in schools.
Volunteers of WPE do carry up ENvironmental Education with us and as such they visit quite a great number of kids all round the country and discover too wonderful cultural diversities and the different people of Cameroon.Here is an example of a WPE volunteer from Germany who shared together and learn more abbout the African wild life conservation methods.Yoi can do same as these volunteers and give to the children another notion on the environment and how to take care about.
W.P.E carry on environmental education in many schools around Cameroon and during classes W.P.E focuses in transmitting to the children the elementary lessons towards environmental awareness, portray as much as possible pictures and stories of animals which are probably facing extinction or produce songs which carry environmental messages. In colleges and high schools, W.P.E functions mostly with specialized established Environmental and nature clubs, this provide a forum for most students in the colleges to apprehend to research conducted by W.P.E
Here are the students of the Environmental club of Bethlehem Legrand college Febe in Yaounde together with the members of WPE on an educative visit to the Mvog-Betsi biological zoo of yaounde. This was during a one week student internship program organised by WPE on how to protect the environment and the wild life protection.This is part of our goals of changing and modifying the attitudes and behaviours of children and students to become environmental awared and protectors. The one week program took the students through educative forums, conferences, visits of primary schools to teach the younger ones on how to take care of their local immediate sorroundings and also visits to parks and the forest..Taking part in an explicative environmental lesson after a round tour of the zoo, here the students have the opportunity to learn from more specialised experts on animals protection and discover why animals are being kept in a zoo.
They will as well become partners who will help us transmit the message and carry forward the project. In schools and colleges where there exist no clubs, we educate as well and establish them. Through this process, W.P.E initiate more and more youths in environmental protection and the objective only remains: Attend more and more students and pupils as possible.
Also, education does not only limits us with students and pupils in schools, but also goes through sensitization of the local person who we think is more in need of understanding how the planet functions, in the Cameroonian context for example those who abuse wildlife most is often the uneducated class, they do these acts out of ignorant, simply because they don’t measure or they don’t have the capacity to measure the impact of their activities on the environment which some totally ignore it collapse such as hunters who often complaint of lack of animals in recent times as compare to the past ignoring completely that they have in the course of time extinct many of these animals. As well the sensitization of the local man remains also one of our priority in education.
Hence proper education and awareness is an important aspect in our interaction with nature, one must recall that even in the west, recognition of the value for preserving nature is fairly recent and also late because industrialization and urbanization even agriculture and mining have already dealt with what nature has provided. Today the greatest issue that concerns all nations in the planet is the protection of the ecosystem. Mankind has discovered the rapidity with which nature is being consumed through basic human activities in the light of industrialization, agriculture, mining, urbanization just to name a few, we live at the expense of nature and probably this nature is exhaustable, what will thus be the future of humanity on earth? Will these resources continue to be available for the coming 100, 200,300 years with the degree at which human population is increasing? These are possible questions that everyone conscious about the fragility of nature should always be asking himself.
W.P.E. AND CONSERVATION EDUCATION.
Think of a challenging conservation problem you have ever encountered, protecting a rare species, winning support for legislation, cleaning up a river or sustainably managing a river. Inevitably, people are part of the problem and public education and outreach will be part of the solution. Effective education and outreach are essential for promoting conservation policy, creating knowledgeable citizens, changing peoples’ behavior, garnering funds, and recruiting volunteers. The fate of our ecosystems and the plants, animals and people that depend on them lies with our ability to educate children and adults, in settings as diverse as schools, communities, farms, and forests. The Millennium Assessment Report (2005) revealed that 60% of the vital ecosystem services that support life on earth _such as fresh water, fisheries, air and water cycling, the regulation of natural hazards and regional climate; are being degraded or unsustainably used. Conservation education and outreach programs are a critical component in changing course toward a more sustainable future.
TEACHING AND LEARNING IN CONSERVATION EDUCATION.
Theories about learning and teaching form the basis for designing effective programs and marketing them to their audiences and administrators. W.P.E provides this forum to young teachers of environmental education, this give the choice of techniques from inquiry learning, experiential learning and cooperative learning. Guidelines are provided for addressing difference between adults and children, concepts such as learning cycles, learning styles, constructivism and multiple intelligences help educators organize programs to meet the needs of any audience. Critical thinking, creative thinking and systems thinking skills can be practiced and promoted through well- designed programs focused on conservation issues.
CHANGING BEHAVIOURS TOWARDS THE ENVIRONMENT.
The road to behavior change is paved with many theories. The disciplines of education, sociology, and psychology provide guidelines for strategies that can be used to influence peoples conservation-related behaviors. What do we mean by behavior? Although it is easy to talk about “behavior” as a single concept, it means different things to different people.
There are at least three different and common uses of this simple term. Educators often define any learning as a change in behavior; behavioral objectives are designed to enhance the measurement of this change. For them behavior could mean the ability to recite the stages of the water cycle. Performing this behavior would indicate having knowledge about the water cycle. The term behavior is broadly used in educational programs that measure cognitive learning in everything from art to technology. There is often no presumption that these behaviors will lead to something else. W.P.E being an N.G.O in conservation and basing in Africa where the need of behavior change is imperative to protect and conserves the planet’s richest biodiversity reserves is laying down these strategies in schools and communities to make sure it works and as we often say; the future of the planet will greatly be determined by the ability of these organs to educate and modify attitudes and behaviors