Welcome to EEASA
The Environmental Education Association of Southern Africa is a voluntary membership based multi-sectoral and multi-organisational association of educators, researchers, policy makers, students and practitioners. The day to day running of the Association is run by a voluntary elected Council, and administered by a secretariat. It is open to all who engage with the relationship between the environment and social processes including politics, economy and development.
The Association has been an integral part of the sub-regional evolvement from nature studies, to environmental education, education for sustainable development and its various manifestations, e.g. green economy. EEASA drew on the pioneering role in the practice of environmental education played by other NGOs including the Kalahari Conservation Society in Botswana, the Wilderness Leadership School, the Wildlife Society of South Africa, and the Mlilwane Trust in Swaziland.
2016 EEASA Conference was such a resounding success. The conference took place in Ekurhuleni, South Africa. It was attended by delegates from over 19 countries. We are grateful to the Gauteng Environmental Education Forum (GEEF) and its partners that ably hosted us for a week full of activities and insightful keynote speakers, presentations, exhibitions and scientific tours. The welcome dinner, hosted by the City of Ekurhuleni and the farewell dinner hosted by the Local Organising Committee were enjoyed by all.
The 34th AGM took place on 4 October 2016 at the Aviator Hotel, Kempton Park, South Africa. Prof. MJ Ketlhoilwe reached the end of his first term as the President. He opted to step down because of heavy work commitments at the University. We are grateful to Prof. Ketlhoilwe for his dedication to the association and his contribution especially in setting up the UN GAP commitment in 2014. We look forward to another year of guidance as an ex-officio member of Council.
Publications 2015: The publication teams have produced another set of publications for 2015. These include the EE Bulletin issue 40/ 41; EE Bulletin issue 42 and the Southern African Journal of EE Vol 31 (2015). The journal is now available on Africa Journal Online (AJOL). To see articles and previous volumes, click here.
Albeit being a voluntary organisation some of the accomplishments include the voluntary hosting of the EEASA annual conferences by countries in the region including the 4th World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC) that was hosted in South Africa; developing and publishing various publications including monographs, bulletins as well as the accredited annual Southern African Journal of Environmental Education (SAJEE); and contributing to the inception and development of major regional Environmental Education /Education for Sustainable Development projects that have become stand-alone programmes such as the SADC Regional Environmental Education Programme (SADC REEP) coordinated by the SADC Food Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate.
EEASA plays a major role in providing a platform for developing and channelling a critical southern African EE/ESD bottom up/ broader voice to be developed and heard globally. Following a vibrant consultation and engagement with the 2005-2014 UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development (UNDESD) as reflected in EEASA’s annual conferences and publications, EEASA has committed to the UNESCO Global Action Plan (GAP) as a way forward post the UNDESD. Although EEASA has committed to all 5 priority areas, UNESCO has invited EEASA to be a member of Partner Networks of the Global Action Programme on ESD participating in priority 3 (Building capacities of educators and trainers – increasing the capacities of educators and trainers to more effectively deliver ESD.) EEASA’s priority 3 commitment is:
“Increasing capacities of educators and trainers through encouraging re-orientation of teacher education programmes in southern Africa in partnership with the SADC Mainstreaming Environment and Sustainability in African Universities (MESA) Chairs, the SADC ESD Teacher Education Network, SADC REEP Network, ESSA, WESSA, and RCEs using cluster and institution based training workshops and online initiatives. Also, to promote and implement the use of eLearning and mLearning in disadvantaged areas, even those where electricity and internet connectivity are lacking – to enhance access to quality ESD materials in partnership with SADC.”
These commitments will be explored, deepened, monitored and reported on through EEASA’s annual conferences, publications and other activities (UNESCO funded a project for Out-of-School Youth in Namibia where they take two courses that we named “Education for Sustainable Development for out-of-School Youth” and “Micro-Gardening (Horticulture)”. These two courses are for skills development where we focus on ESD (specifically on water and energy management) and food security where the youth learn how to produce vegetable using well managed water. These two courses are running on the mLearning system that I presented in Japan and we selected to offer the two courses in a rural school in Omusati region. The school don’t have electricity from the national grid and without the Internet; we use solar energy. The out-of-school youth use the system in the afternoon when the school closes and the school learners use it during the morning up to 13:00 (school closes this time). We have already learning materials on the system for ESD (a lot of learning materials including the integration of ESD in some subjects offered in the Namibia curriculum), Mathematics, ebooks for kids to foster literacy and many more.)