2023_09_04 Network meeting in the Gesäuse National Park, Wölger, Haas, Slamanig, Hartmann, Remich (from left)

Land pushes initiatives in environmental education

We need to get people excited about nature again

People are increasingly losing their connection to nature - and thus also their understanding of the urgency of nature and species conservation. At the invitation of the Styrian Education Network, representatives of adult education recently discussed with cooperation partners in the Gesäuse National Park how to get them excited again about the beauty of our landscape and how important it is to preserve and protect intact nature in all its diversity. The unanimous tenor: nature education does not work by pointing the finger - it needs networking and strong political support! This is why the education department of the province of Styria has also appointed the topics of environmental education and sustainability as priority topics within the framework of the initiative "Rethinking Adult Education".


"We have to get people excited about nature again and make them aware that we humans need it to live and survive," said Herbert Wölger, Managing Director of the Gesäuse National Park, at the event "Future Environmental Education and Nature Conservation", emphasising the urgency of professional nature education. The previous week, representatives of Styrian adult education (such as VHS, Urania, Landwirtschaftliches Fortbildungsinstitut, etc.) and the province discussed what is needed in this regard and how to create a greater understanding of the need for nature conservation among the general public with nature conservation experts and cooperation partners from the national parks and the hunting community - and all this in the middle of the unique natural landscape of the Gesäuse National Park.


Strong network to inspire enthusiasm for nature conservation

"I only consider what I know to be worth protecting," said Wölger, underlining the special choice of the venue and thus also the indispensability of getting people out into nature more as part of awareness-raising. And he emphasised: "Fortunately, we still have many intact natural areas in Styria and an excellent offer to discover them and to use them for oneself - one's health, one's leisure time." Now it is important to make them visible, to inspire people for the offers and at the same time to strengthen their awareness for nature conservation and the importance of biodiversity. That's why events like this network meeting, where different organisations and stakeholders exchange ideas and look for solutions together, are particularly important," he said. Because, according to the unanimous tenor of those involved, nature education and nature conservation can only succeed and be effective in the long term through joint measures in a strong network of interests and with the necessary political backing.


Education Provincial Council focuses on sustainability

An important step in this direction has already been taken by Education Provincial Councillor Werner Amon within the framework of the event series "Rethinking Adult Education", which he initiated, and he has appointed the topics of sustainability and environmental education as central focal themes. "Climate protection is one of the most important future topics of our time - it is all the more important to anchor nature conservation and the environment as a central educational topic also in regional adult education. That is why it is very important to me that institutions from nature conservation and adult education work together on cooperation possibilities and that the results will be included in the 'Styrian Declaration of Adult Education'," says Werner Amon, Provincial Councillor for Europe, International Affairs, Education and Personnel.


Easy access to quality information is just as central as low-threshold regional offers that are fun and create closeness to nature - for our youngest as well as for the largest population group of adults, who should also act as role models. The focus is on learning together with a lot of fun, building up knowledge and skills - and that is always associated with great added value - from health and well-being to social contacts," Kerstin Slamanig, Managing Director of the Styrian Education Network, also whets the appetite for environmental education. In this context, she once again points out the many offers in this regard, which can be found very easily and clearly in the so-called Continuing Education Navi Styria. (https://erwachsenenbildung-steiermark.at/angebote/)


Photo 1(@Land Steiermark /Binder): State Councillor for Education Werner Amon

Photo 2(@Luef Light): Network meeting in the Gesäuse: Herbert Wölger (GF Gesäuse National Park), Angelika Haas (VHS), Kerstin Slamanig (GF Bildungsnetzwerk Steiermark), Martin Hartmann (Gesäuse National Park), Bernhard Remich (Nature Conservation Academy) (from left)


Contact and queries

Styria Education Network

Mag.a (FH) Kerstin Slamanig | Management Bildungsnetzwerk Steiermark

kerstin.slamanig@eb-stmk.at | +43 664 4186814 | https://erwachsenenbildung-steiermark.at

Mag.a Johanna Vucak | Press Relations Education Network Styria

johanna.vucak@eb-stmk.at | +43 664 4123223 | https://erwachsenenbildung-steiermark.at


Gesäuse National Park

DI Herbert Wölger | Management National Park

h.woelger@nationalpark-gesaeuse.at | +43 664 8252300

Andreas Hollinger | Communication Gesäuse National Park

a.hollinger@nationalpark-gesaeuse.at  | +43 664 8252305

Photo: State Councillor for Education Werner Amon

2023_09_04 Network Meeting in...

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Photo: Network meeting in the Gesäuse

2023_09_04 Network Meeting in...

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2023_09_04 Network Meeting in...

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