Cyprus Mail

67 eco-schools receive awards

ECO-SCHOOLS in Nicosia, Larnaca and Famagusta were awarded by Hellenic Bank on Thursday as part of their 16 year corporate social responsibility programme for the environment.

In all, 67 schools received a certificate and a green flag for helping their students learn about biodiversity, energy, water and the sea thus making them responsible members of society for the environment.

Hellenic Bank Group General Manager George Karagiorgis said that “private and public organisations, as well as the society, have a duty to continue to invest in environmental actions that despite the challenges we face – and there are many – we have to be ready to suggest, as much as we can, solutions and proposals on how to combine economic development with the environment.”

Three schools also won the best short movie award where contestants outlined the efforts their school made to promote and encourage ecological thinking. Their prizes included a prepaid P-card with €100.

Environment Commissioner Ioanna Panayiotou said that “we have succeeded in introducing environmental thinking not just through planting a tree but putting the philosophy into practise.”

Children, she added, are like sponges and they can learn to respect each other and the environment from a young age making them more conscious citizens. The next step should be to take students out to nature to understand the ecological system and how these trends could be adopted by the state.

Currently, there are 250 schools participating in the Eco-schools project on the island, a sustainable schools programme operated by the international Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE).

Primary school inspector Panayiotis Kyros, representing the Ministry of education, congratulated all the schools that were exerting efforts to ensure a better future for the following generations amid hopes that the children would implement all the lessons they have learnt.

The event was organised in collaboration with the Education ministry and CYMEPA – an environmental organisation.

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