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Greek Corner
MEdIES in the GAP Partner Network 1

Neroupoli, the Greek water-city

MARLISCO exhibition


World's Largest Lesson launching for school year 2019-20
10th WEEC, Bangkok, 3-7 November 2019
First World Non-Formal Education Forum
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Simple view

MEdIES was happy to take part in the organisation of yet one more Summer University, this year in  the Central Balkan Biosphere Reserve (BR) in Bulgaria. For one week, from 21 to 28 July 2019, the newly established Central Balkan BR was home to more than 35 young experts, PhD students, and staff of BRs from 15 countries, chosen from 125 applications, from all over the world.

This was the fifth one in a series of Summer Universities that have been established and co-organized by MIO-ECSDE and the UNESCO Venice Office, supported every time by a different BR or a candidate BR. The previous ones were held in Amfissa, Greece (2014), Samothraki Greece (2016), Sardinia, Italy (2017), and Parnon, Greece (2018), focusing on topics of designation and functioning of Biosphere Reserves within the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) programme of UNESCO.

The 2019 edition of the Summer University focused on the topics of Integrated Management, Sustainable Tourism and BR Promotion. It was co-organised with the Bulgarian Biodiversity Foundation. The national and local hosts and supporters include the Ministry of Environment and Water, the National MAB Committee of Bulgaria, the Directory of “Central Balkan” National Park, the Karlovo Municipality, the Troyan Municipality, the National Bulgarian Commission for UNESCO, the Chateau Copsa, Rozino Organic Farm, the National Exhibition of Artistic Crafts and Arts, the village Oreshak, the Hotel Caza Art, and the project “Unity”.

It was an intensive, multidisciplinary and experiential training that aimed to develop the understanding and competences of the participants on the management of Biosphere Reserves as "laboratories" and "catalysts" for Sustainable Development. During the week, in a program combining theoretical sessions, practical work and many visits, the participants were introduced and discussed the future of Biosphere Reserves.

Find in this link an overview, brief report, presentations and documents of the event

View some snapshots of the event below

Ice break session

Official opening at the Karlovo Municipality

Official opening at the Karlovo Municipality

A group photo

Another group photo

Eating together

Paragliding experience

Paragliding experience

Life in the Central Balkan Park

Walking in the Central Balkan Park

Group work session

Closing ceremony at the Troyan Municipality

Closing ceremony at the Troyan Municipality

Informal evaluation Session

Certificates time



  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  


(B) To promote thematic priorities of the region through the lenses of ESD, such as:
- Education on Sustainable Consumption & Production (SCP) | links with green and circular economy
- Combating Marine Litter and Plastics through ESD & promoting ocean literacy
- ESD & Biodiversity issues | links with Biosphere Reserves (BRs)
- Education for Human Rights, Refugees & Inclusive Societies
Dates & Venues
Heraklion city, Crete, Greece
24 June 2019: (closed) Executive Meeting of the Mediterranean Committee on ESD, Capsis Astoria Hotel
25 – 26 June 2019: Regional Workshop on ESD, Conference and Culture Centre of Heraklion
Interactive plenaries for dialogue & four Thematic Sessions including key presentations followed by interventions by participants.
Working languages
English, French, Greek
The meetings are organised by MIO-ECSDE/MEdIES and supported by the EU, Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), UN Environment MAP, UNESCO, UNESCO Chair & Network on ESD in the Mediterranean/University of Athens, the Heraklion Development Agency, the Region of Crete, the Ministry of Education and Culture of Cyprus and the Government of Greece. It is under the auspices of the Hellenic National Commission of UNESCO.
Find here a Practical Info Note: English and French
Preliminary Programme English and  French
The Mediterranean Strategy on ESD (MSESD) (trilingual publication)
The Action Plan of the MSESD in English French Arabic
Templates for participants interventions (English, French)
Online survey on ESD for participants
List of references

The 2nd Meeting of the Mediterranean ESD Committee & Regional ESD Workshop took place with success on 24-26 July 2019 in the city of Heraklion in Crete hosted by the Heraklion Development Agency and the Region of Crete, organised by MIO-ECSDE/MEdIES and the UNESCO Chair on ESD in the Mediterranean, supported by the UN Environment/MAP, UfM and the Ministry of Education of Cyprus and under the official auspices of the Hellenic Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs, the Hellenic Ministry of Environment & Energy and the Hellenic National Commission for UNESCO.

The meeting gathered 80 participants from 20 countries, and namely: Algeria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus, Egypt, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Palestine, Portugal, Spain, Syria and Tunisia, Turkey. The participants were mainly representatives of the Ministries of Education, Environment that follow the Action Plan of the MSESD processes, Universities and NGO staff, as well as representatives of: UNESCO, UN Environment/MAP, UNECE, UfM and LAS.

The meeting served a two-fold purpose: (A) To review the progress made in mainstreaming and applying the Action Plan of the Mediterranean Strategy on Education for Sustainable Development (MSESD) by the countries and stakeholders, and provide input to the international and regional processes and frameworks where MSESD is integrated: ESD 2030 (by UNESCO, following the GAP), the Mediterranean Strategy on Sustainable Development (MSSD), the initiatives of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM). (B) To promote thematic priorities of the region through the lenses of ESD, such as:

- Education on Sustainable Consumption & Production (SCP) | links with green and circular economy

- Combating Marine Litter and Plastics through ESD & promoting ocean literacy

- ESD & Biodiversity issues | links with Biosphere Reserves (BRs)

- Education for Human Rights, Refugees & Inclusive Societies


In the afternoon of June 24 the Executive Meeting of the Med. ESD Committee took place during which a review of the Committees' activities made by Prof Scoullos, followed by a discussion on potential orientations for the next period of: 2019 - 2021, and the overall framework of collaborations & resources for the Committee's activities and initiatives. Members of the Committee are: UNESCO and UNESCO Venice Office,UN Environment/MAP, UNECE, UfM, LAS and the Ministries of Education of Cyprus (Chair), Croatia, Greece, Malta, Portugal and the Ministry of Environment of Jordan, while MEdIES of MIO-ECSDE has been entrusted with the overall Technical Secretariat of  the Committee.

During the two-days Workshop that followed on 25-26 June, the participants shared their experiences on ESD national plans and programmes and SDGs strategies. To this end, the Workshop was divided to four Thematic Sessions including key presentations and interventions by participants, on Education on SCP, Combating Marine Litter and Plastics through ESD, ESD & Biodiversity/ Biosphere Reserves (BRs), and Education for Human Rights, Refugees & Inclusive Societies.

Find here the Presentations.

In general, all countries had an important progress to share regarding ESD promotion and mainstreaming in the related policies, agendas and initiatives, at the national level,  since the 1st Meeting of the Med. ESD Committee, in Nicosia, Cyprus (November 2017), a fact very encouraging and positive, as the Chair of the Committee and Prof Scoullos, pointed out. Prof Scoullos pleged, on behalf of the Secretariat, to report this information to the liaised international organisations and bodies, and make some highlights during the UNESCO ESD & GCED Forum  in Viet Nam (2-5 July 2019). Additionally, the need of more and effective collaboration among countries and programmes was once more highlighted and the Secretariat promised to intensify efforts towards this end, with the help of the counties. Last but not least, the case and example of the Asterousia area of a territory committed to be sustainable and keep strong links with ESD was noted as one of the take-home messages.


Final Programme

List of references

Concept note

The Mediterranean Strategy on ESD (MSESD) (trilingual publication)

The Action Plan of the MSESD in English French Arabic

Link of Dropbox (photos)



Snapshots from the meetings
















  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

The exhibition is comprised of short video animations and story boards. It aims, on one hand, to sensitize the public in Greece and Malta about the water resources, their threats in both countries and wider in the Mediterranean, aggregated by climate change, and on the other, to shed light on potential solutions offered through alternative, 'non-conventional' water resources.

All videos are exclusive creations of students of Department of Graphic Design and Visual Communication of the University of Western Attica. Their content relates to various aspects (from (over)consumption, to pollution, irrigation, etc.). The short video animations created with youthful imagination, humor and taste transmit messages for the proper use and management of water and, hopefully, contribute to the cultivation of environmental literate and responsible citizens.

The exhibition was organized in parallel in the two countries, between April - May 2019 in the context of the 2019 World Water Day, themed "Leave no-one behind". It total, the exhibition that has been seen by more than 2,200 visitors, including families, students and teachers.

This exhibition is the result of the collaboration of two universities (University of Western Attica & University of Athens), one governmental agency(Ghajn National Water Conservation Awareness Centre of Malta) and two non-governmental agencies (MIO-ECSDEand GWP-Med). Long-term cooperation between them is expected to grow further in the future.

Shots from the display of the exhibition in the two countries :

More about the exhibition and the organisers:







  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

From May 23 to May 25 2019, more than 20 expert trainers from Greece, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine, gathered in Athens and exchanged methods, stories, experiences and challenges in inclusion education they face in their countries.

Apparently, our barriers in our work settings are many, and not always obvious. Thankfully, there are also many options for improving our inclusion strategies and paths to do that.

After this training we feel more inspired and skilled to proceed with our efforts on inclusion at a country level and at work level. MEdIES staff is thankful to those workshop trainers that prepared engaging and thought provoking workshops and to the all participants that devoted their time to meaningfully attend this seminar.

Shots from the meeting



  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

This was the 10th year for MEdIES to have collaborated with GWP-Med to implement educational activities in schools and teacher trainings. This year’s activities took place mainly in the wider area of Athens from February 2018 to June 2018, in Thessaloniki city (April 2018) and in the island of Kalimnos and Agathonisi on 28 Octover - 2 November 2018. Totally we reached to 2425 students & 307 teachers.

As in previous years, the educational activities in the schools targeted mainly primary and early high school students, aiming to inform and sensitize them on the issue of water saving, particularly through the revival of the traditional practice of rainwater harvesting and the greywater recycling practice. Our approach is experiential and discovery-based. At the end of each intervention in the class the educational poster “Water cycle in the town” is disseminated to students.

In Kalimnos and Agathonisi,  280 students and  76 teachers participated in the project's activities coordinated by Vassilis Psallidas.

In Thessaloniki 286 students and 31 teachers were engaged (access the report)

In Attica, a plethora of educational activitiers for students and teachers were carried out in which 1859 students participated while  200 teachers have been trained in the respective seminars and events. The activities in Athens are coordinated by Mr Vassilis Psallidas.

All educational activities are organised in collaboration with the Departments of Environmental Education (EE) of Primary and Secondary Education of the respective Directorates of the Ministry of Education, Research adn Religious Affairs.

The activities are under the educational component of the Non-Conventional Water Resources in the Mediterranean Programme led by GWP-Med and supported by the Coca Cola Foundation (in Atlanta).

Snapshots from the activities in schools:












  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

Early in 2018, MEdIES has once again teamed up with the National Water Awareness Centre of Malta, or “Ghajn” (= water-pond) to further strengthen the educational activities taking place at the Centre. MEdIES undertook to develop four experiential educational intervention / scenarios to compliment the learning experience offered already to the students who visit Ghajn regularly. Following an inception mission in March 2018 (more information here), the MEdIES team has developed four different scenarios, each to accompany the four existing touch screen games that are in use at Ghajn.

Between 16 and 21 December, the MEdIES staff I. Alampei, V., Malotidi and V. Psallidas visited Malta this time to ‘field-test’ the newly developed scenarios with students and experts. The four scenarios that were custom-made to fit-in with the educational needs of the Centre were ‘tested’ on four school classes (primary and middle school level), and a group of ~15 experts and teachers. We are very pleased with our trials and we collected very useful feedback and comments to help us finalise the scenarios, together with the team of the Ghajn Centre.

All scenarios will start to be implemented at Gjahn in the coming months, while four appealing brochures to be handed to students are also being prepared. The four hands-on programmes (and brochures) are about: (a) the Water Cycle (& responsible water use); (b) Water management in the past (mostly in forts); (c) The water systems in Malta (with emphasis on the Non-Conventional Resources ); (d) the ‘green’ elements of the Ghajn Centre itself.

Moreover, an in-service training course is foreseen to be held with Maltese teachers (September 2019).

Read more about the Ghajn Centre here: https://bit.ly/2QeGD4o


Snapshots of the December Activities of MEdIES at Ghajn:


Applying with the experts the new educ. programmes

Playing with the puppets-heros of the educ. programme about the water cycle



Playing with the puppets-heros of the educ. programme about the water cycle



"Unfolding" the water monuments of Malta ("water in the past")



Discovering the old water vessels ("water in the past")






Assembling a model for rainwater harvesting ("water systems/NCWRs")



Assembling a model for rainwater harvesting ("water systems/NCWRs")


Assembling a model for greywater recycling ("water systems/NCWRs")


The interior of the Ghajn Centre


The Ghajn Centre


  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

During the past 2.5 months, MIO-ECSDE/MEdIES in collaboration with the Nikaia A.I. Rentis Municipality (Greece) and the Piraeus Directorate of Primary and Secondary Education - sincere thanks to ESD Officers Mr. G. Voulgaris and Ms. A. Sourbi - have jointly designed and carried out a number activities around the exhibition entitled “Know, feel, act to stop marine litter together”, that was displayed in Nikaia, including:

- Two seminars for 50 educators (26-27/09/2018) informed on the topic of marine litter and got ideas about what they could do to sensitize their students on the topic.

- One seminar for non-Greek educators: 24 teachers and adult trainers have visited the exhibition, observed a class-visit and critically reflected on its educational potential.

- Daily school visits: In total 1,815 students of primary and secondary level visited the exhibition and were engaged in activities about marine litter and recycling. Many thanks to the officers:  Nikos Kouvatsos, Athina Fragouli, Vaso Papacharalamous, who organized and run the daily interventions for students and became themselves marine litter experts, and to the Dep.Major Michalis Lagoumitzis for his support.

- One public awareness raising event in the afternoon of 7 /11/2018 gathering 35 citizens.

- Public visits: On certain weekday afternoons MEdIES collaborator, Ms. Efi Touli, has kindly welcomed and guided the visitors. During the 2.5 months the exhibition has been visited by 800 people.

ORGANISERS: The activities including the 2.5 month display, the school visits and 2 teacher trainings were coorganised by MIO-ECSDE / MEdIES, the Nikaia A.I. Rentis Municipality; the Directorates of Primary and Secondary Education of Pereus; and the UNESCO Chair and Network of the UoA.



Teachers Seminar in September




Students' introduction to the Exchibition




Hands on activities




Shorting out litter







  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

MEdIES was happy to facilitate two successful Trainings on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) that were organized by the EU-funded SWIM-Horizon 2020 Support Mechanism Programme, on 2 - 3 and 5 - 6 December 2018, Egypt, in cooperation with the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA).

The Trainings aimed to raise awareness and contribute to building the capacity of formal and non formal educators and Ministries Officers on ESD programmes, focusing on showcasing how educational projects about solid waste management (recycling, marine litter) can be designed and applied. The 100  participants (in all meetings) were primary and secondary school teachers, university professors, staff of the Ministry of Education & Technical Education and of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency as well as representatives of the Civil Society (NGOs, Associations, etc). The trainings combined presentations, group-work and experience sharing, while the participants were provided with educational resources so as to enhance their competences on how to design and deliver ESD.

On December 4th, an inter-ministerial consultation took place to discuss the ways to boost the proper implementation of the Mediterranean Strategy on ESD through its Action Plan and to align this with the existing national initiatives and programmes on ESD in the country. Actually, the two trainings and the  consultation contributed to the country’s efforts towards implementing ESD by producing  concrete recommendations on boosting the ESD components of the Egyptian Strategy on Sustainable Development (2030) to be finalised in February 2019.

Overall, the trainees obtained an understanding of the regional and global policy framework on ESD and were able to experience hands-on how a SWIM-H2020 SM priority theme (solid waste management) can be delivered within formal curricula and non-formal education schemes by developing their competences on how to design and implement an ESD programme and campaigns on topics related to sustainable management of solid waste and especially marine litter (minimisation, sustainable consumption, circular/green economy, etc.). They also had the opportunity to connect with the EuroMed-wide “MEdIES ” network of educators.


Find below the basic documents of the meetings, the outcomes of the trainings' evaluation as well as some pictures from the meetings:

-  All presentations are available at: https://bit.ly/2RVfvJf

- The Action Plan of the Mediterranean Strategy on ESD is available here: English and Arabic

- The Mediterranean Strategy on Education for Sustainable Development (MSESD) three languages -Eng, Fr., Ar - is available here: BOOKLET

The Educational pack "Know feed act! to stop marine litter" in Arabic is available here


Evaluation outcomes

The trainees of both trainings voiced a very high level of satisfaction overall (average: 95%). More particularly the evaluated the various elements of the trainings as shown in the following table:



Satisfaction level using a 100% scale

2-3 December

5-6 December

A1. Efficient logistics: location of venue and interpretation



A2. Smooth flow of programme, efficient handling of emerging needs and attentiveness to participants concerns



A3. Presentations correspond and contribute to the planned objectives and are conducive to enhanced shared understanding and participation on addressed topics



A4. Clarity, coverage and sufficiency of concepts, objectives, anticipated outputs and outcomes



A5. The materials distributed were helpful



A6. Efficient and Effective Facilitation



A7. Overall rating of the event





Snapshots from the trainings






























  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  


European educators feel empowered to act against marine litter: This is one of the key messages of the week long course that took place from 7th to 13th October 2018, in Athens Greece. The training course brought together 24 teachers and adult trainers form Cyprus, Italy, Greece and Malta. During the week-long course, the participants had the opportunity to be acquainted with various educational tools, follow lectures, participate in hands-on workshops, do a series of site visits including a beach clean-up and monitoring and, finally come up with their own plans for projects to sensitize their target groups on the issue of marine litter.

Why should the European teaching community be concerned with the Marine Litter problem? Two-thirds of our planet is covered by oceans, and marine litter, especially plastic, is found in all of them, even in isolated, pristine environments. It poses a threat not only to the health of our seas and coasts but also to our economy and our communities. We call it "marine" because it ends up in the sea, but most of this litter is generated by land-based activities, often far away from the shoreline. Stopping the flow of litter into our seas concerns everyone and the best place to start tackling this global problem is on land.

There is lot to be done to tackle the complex problem on a global scale, including targeted policies, law enforcement, green design of products, concerted country actions, etc. Admittedly education of youth and sensitization of the general public on adopting ocean-friendly behaviors is one of the key actions needed. At the end of the course our participant teachers declared they have understood the scale of the problem and that they feel ready and empowered to act on it together with their students.


The evaluation done through anonymous questionnaires revealed a high level of satisfaction (3.63 on an 4 point scale), while 24 out of the 25 respondents declared they would absolutely recommend the course to a colleague. Still, there is room for improvement of the course content: Most trainees asked to further increase the workshops and hands-on sessions compared to the theoretic sessions, as well as the interactions with the Greek teachers, possibly through including some school visits in the daily programme.


The detailed agenda of the course: Download it here

The places of interest (visits) pinned on a map.

The press release IN ENGLISH

The press release IN GREEK


Here below a few snaphots from our training's sessions:

Discovering the MARLISCO Exhibition on Marine Litter, currently hosted by the Municipality of Nikaia-Renti at the Village Park, Nikaia, Attiki

At the Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association (HELMPEPA) Exhibition @ Peiraus

Beach clean-up and monitoring using the EEA MarineLitterWatch App

A truck all filled up with the seafloor litter that the divers team "We Dive We Clean" have collected (in total 650 Kg)

Puppet workshop on the Mediterranean tutle Caretta-caretta and the litter marine issue by MEDASSET

Making our own pins and bookmarks from old paper magazines guided by Shedia-Art team

Designing our own projects on Marine Litter and Education for Sustainable Development

Discovering the history of the Sounion Temple during the sunset time guided by Sophia Roc Mella, Director of the Handicraft-Industrial Educational Museum

At the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research in front of the submarine!!!

The training course has been organised by the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (www.mio-ecsde.org) through its education initiative MEdIES (www.medies.net) and the UNESCO Chair and Network of the University of Athens (http://unescochair.chem.uoa.gr/). The trainees supported their participation through the KA1 (Key Action 1: Mobility of Individuals) of Erasmus+

  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

On October 5, 2018 MEdIES/MIO-ECSDE successfully organised a beach clean-up activity engaging some 100 people in the SEF beach, Attica. MIO-ECSDE undertook the organisation of the activity after the invitation made by OPAP Company which dedicated its 2018 CSR (corporate social responsibility) Day to staff’s awareness raising on the issue of marine litter.

To this end, a couple of days prior to the bach clean up, MEdIES presented the status, causes and challenges related to marine litter, in Greece and in the European Seas, in general, during a special event at the OPAP premises. During the event the participants were almost shocked when realising the threats caused by marine litter to aquatic ecosystems. They were also informed about the practicalities of the beach-clean-up activity and the ‘protocol’ that they would follow.

The day of the clean up, some 100 staff - administrative, financing, communication officers, etc. were coordinated by MIO-ECSDE officers and collected more than 1,5 tonnes of litter;  the vast majority of the litter items were plastic ones. After the activity many participants expressed their willingness to reduce plastic consumption and improve their reuse/recycling behaviour.


MIO-ECSDE team & some of the piles of litter collected




  Posted in Trainings & Conferences comments  

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