A new post has just been published on the ESD Prize Blog by Andreas Keding, Technical Director of the Namib Desert Environmental Education Trust (NaDEET) in Namibia, a key partner of the UNESCO Global Action Programme that won the UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in 2018.
He is telling us how NaDEET has been using part of the USD 50,000 award money, and what he has learned himself in the process:
"Running high-quality programmes for participants in a remote area like NaDEET Centre is always a challenge. Behind the scenes, away from the education programmes at the Centre, there is a team running and maintaining systems of logistics (including food), maintenance and services like electricity, water, rubbish disposal and sewage.
NaDEET has put some of the award money from the ESD Prize into streamlining, improving and modernising these systems. Number one on the list is the co-funding of a bigger sustainable garden that will play into the creation of a circular food system. The idea of the garden is to take all the organic waste from the Centre (including meat, bones, leftover food) and process it into soil to produce more food for the Centre. The first steps have been made and the first soil has been produced. Water infrastructure has to be upgraded, made efficient and measurable.
As we are located in a very active tourism area, NaDEET is also spending some prize money to further its reach by developing a day centre. This is to start informing and educating visiting tourists about our work, ESD, light pollution, and the local conservation efforts on NamibRand Nature Reserve. We hope of course that through this exposure more sustainable travel will be encouraged and that some funds can be raised to bring school groups to the NaDEET Centre that cannot otherwise afford it.
Since a big part of sustainability is efficiency (use less) and renewable resources, we have also committed to upgrading our solar system and include new battery technology that will show the differences with our old system and highlight the use of technology in advancing sustainable development.
For me as the Technical Director of NaDEET winning the Prize has opened a great opportunity to explore the avenues of circular systems and trying to develop NaDEET infrastructure and support systems even more sustainably than before. I personally also felt educated in sustainable development because of what I learned during the process of planning these projects. It is presumed that sufficient funding can solve problems easily, I learned this is not necessarily so. Spending the money, wisely, sustainably and efficiently with sustainable outcomes is part of the sustainable development process."