Sustainable Development Success Stories

Promotion of environmental awareness at the community-level

Location Asia and Pacific region (including Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Pacific Islands, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam).
Responsible Organisation Economic and Social Commission for Africa and the Pacific (ESCAP) with funding from the Government of the Netherlands, 1994-1997.
Description The project was designed to promote public awareness and people s active participation in environmental protection and environmentally sound use of natural resources in order to alleviate poverty, particularly in rural areas. It also endeavoured to provide community leaders, teachers, and leaders of various citizens groups at the local level with contacts and information material to encourage people s participation in environmental protection and management at the local level. ESCAP had initiated and supported the Asia-Pacific Forum of Environmental Journalists (AFEJ) since 1988 and regularly involved them in environmental awareness issues. Following the NGO-Media Symposium in 1995, it was decided to strengthen contact and networking with NGOs.
Issues Addressed Public environmental awareness; Community involvement; NGOs and media involvement in environmental awareness; Training.
Results Achieved
  • Community-level reports from countries of the region, written by NGO members and environmental journalists.

  • Information materials in the form of posters and guidelines for community leaders.

  • Training workshop to develop guidelines to assist community leaders in raising public awareness to the environmental issues.

Lessons Learned
  • Personal contact is essential in community-level efforts to generate commitment and obtain results.

  • Strong network of environmental journalists helpful.

  • Attention should be paid to request resources for translation and assistance in local languages.

Contact Environment Section
Environment and Natural Resources Management Division, ESCAP

UN Building, Rajadamnern Avenue
Bangkok 10200 Thailand
Tel. (662) 288 1234; Fax (662) 288 1000