You don’t have to be an icon like Greta Thunberg to be young and fight climate change. There are thousands of boys and girls from all over the world concerned about the future of the planet and an environmental crisis that, far from disappearing, is advancing by leaps and bounds.
Young people who get involved and with small actions contribute to making the municipality in which they live a more sustainable, closer and greener place.
Among them are the second-year students of the IES Nicolás Estévez Borges, in Icod de los Vinos, who are immersed in the Erasmus + Feeling blue? Go green! (Do you feel sad? Go green!), a title that represents a play on words: if you feel that something is wrong, direct your efforts and your dedication to converting the space where you live into a “green” and sustainable environment from the point of view of from an environmental point of view.
The initiative, which was launched in 2020 and will continue until 2023, is implemented in the subject of Creative and Communicative Practices. It consists of several parts: the first one is to identify unhealthy points in the municipality, that is, those that pose a danger to the population, such as spills, sidewalks raised by trees, uncontrolled or abandoned garbage on public roads, places where a missing fence at the access to a pond, cracks in the road that can cause problems for passers-by, or cars that have been abandoned for a long time.
The truth is that the students collected almost a hundred unhealthy places in the City of Drago that were part of an exhibition visited two weeks ago by the mayor, Francis González, and the Councilor for Education, Lourdes Tosco, who made a commitment to respond to these problems and find a solution. There will be some that it will not be possible to deal with for different reasons, others that will not correspond to the City Council as it is not the competent administration for it, while some can be resolved and also do not require large investments.
“It is a way of making the students participate in municipal life, but also of opening their eyes so that they do not have a conformist attitude towards the reality they have, but instead live their town and denounce what they do not like because that way they will have a better town. We citizens have to be demanding with ourselves and with those who govern us”, emphasizes Juan José Dorta Jiménez, director of the IES and one of the teachers who teaches the subject.
In two weeks, a representation of three teachers and five students travel to Romania to present this new project that was implemented in this school year. They will spend seven days during which they will learn about the realities of other European countries such as Italy, Portugal and France, which also participate in this European project.
In its three years of duration – a pandemic in between – different actions have been carried out with a green attitude, such as the celebration of international days associated with the environment and ecology, workshops, exhibitions, contests, cultural and sports events, research work and the creation of an Environmental Committee in the center.
Within six months, that is, at the beginning of the next school year, the political leaders will bring photos of the improvements made, with which a new exhibition will also be held to show the changes they have brought about for the population. This last step will conclude this first project that will continue in the coming years.
“The aim is for both the municipal authorities and each one of the citizens to get involved in the construction of a closer, better known, more sustainable and greener Europe”, Dorta insists. And this inevitably happens through a change in the perspective of the responsibility that each person has in the preservation of the natural heritage and the cleaning and care of the environment. Adopting a ‘green attitude’ depends not only on young people who are committed to the planet, but also on society as a whole.