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The objective of Junior Ranger courses is to increase the awareness of the environment and nature among youngsters and to create and develop the cooperation network around national parks. In Estonia, the courses have been organised since 2004 and are ongoing.
The objective of the summer course and the continuing seminars of Junior Ranger is to increase the awareness of the environment and nature among youngsters. Junior Rangers are shown the practical work of nature conservation, they acquire knowledge of flora and fauna of the national park and discuss how to make the world a better place. In the camps, several necessary works are performed which can help endangered species and conserve cultural heritage.
The target group is young people from 6 to 12 grade who are interested in nature, who live in the territory of a national park or nearby, who have participated in natural science quizzes, subject Olympics and/or are truly interested in nature can participate in the summer courses. In the summer courses, up to 20 youngsters can participate in each national park; in the autumn and spring continuing seminars, up to 15 youngsters interested in nature can participate.
The responsible authority is the Environmental Board. The programme is funded from the state budget.
The Ministry of Environment initiated the environmental awareness programme in 2006 and the programme is ongoing. The aim is to support the development of environmentally friendly consumption habits by the Estonian people and an awareness of ecological balance.
Four action lines are supported under the programme, of which one is explicitly targeting young people in general education schools: „Activities supporting the development of environmentally friendly consumption habits and learning about the ecological balance by students in the general educational system.“
The activities supported under this line of action:
- Study trips with active learning programmes in nature- or environment education centres
- Outdoor camps for young people
- Local school project to support environmentally friendly consumption and the richness of the ecological environment.
- Development of study materials to support trips, camps, projects.
The responsible authority for the implementation is The Foundation Environmental Investments Centre (EIC). The programme is funded from the state budget.