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AfricaMoney | August 21, 2017

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Terra Foundation donates Rs 203333 to education under sustainability programme

Terra Foundation donates Rs 203333 to education under sustainability programme

The education for sustainability (EFS) project advises the youth on key questions surrounding durable development, and is targeted towards secondary schools in Mauritius. (Image: Cecilia Samoisi/ AfricaMoney)

Terra Foundation, the corporate social responsibility division of sugar major Terra Mauricia, contributed to the cause of education by handing over a cheque of Rs 203,333 to Mauritius’ secondary school, BPS Fatima College, in Goodlands.

The Bureau de l’Education Catholique (BEC) adopted the sustainability programme (education for sustainability or EFS) to allow every individual to acquire knowledge, competence, attitude and necessary values to shape a durable future.

The EFS advises the youth on key questions surrounding durable development, and is targeted towards secondary schools in Mauritius.

Mr Yassar, teacher at the BPS Fatima College, explained that this new project needs participation from all to sensitize the faculty as well as students on the environment.

Mr Louis-Denis Koenig from the CSR Committee of Terra Foundation evoked the commitment of Terra Foundation towards the EFS project.

“This initiative is in line with the vision of the group and with a major objective of the foundation, which is to prepare students to meet future challenges. Ecology and sustainable development are two major challenges for our country, as well as the planet as a whole,” he said.

Furthermore, in 2013, the foundation celebrated a ‘green month’ to sensitise staff and the general public on the 3R principles – Reduce, Recycle, Reuse – and composting.

“The EFS project allows us to support an innovative and important initiative, which is to teach young students participative methods to change their behaviour and take measures for sustainable development, within the framework of their curriculum,” he added.

The EFS program also consists of eco-friendly activities to sensitize students and help them in practical implementation of ecological literacy through annual eco-retreats such as camping and riding in nature, among others.

In addition, the school has set up an Eco-Club and organised green spaces in the yard of the school building.

“The BPS Fatima College has embarked on the second phase to become a Green School model with the support of Terra Foundation. We are aware that we are custodians of the Planet Earth and that any education must be based on principles and solid values,” Gilberte Chung, Director at BEC, said.

Besides, the students of BPS Fatima College cultivate an endemic garden as well as healing plants and the school is self-sufficient in electricity generation and consumption through its photovoltaic panels.

Since 2011, Ecological Living In Action (ELIA) has been working with 18 Catholic secondary schools from the BEC network to support their ecological literacy development.

The EFS programme started in January 2013 and is carried out over 5 years.

Three Schools volunteered be part of the EFS pilot programme: Loreto College Curepipe, St Mary’s College in Rose-Hill, and BPS Fatima in Goodlands. The pilot schools signed the EFS Charter and Pledge on 19 February 2014 to showcase their commitment to the implementation of the EFS principles and practices.

ELIA in collaboration with the BEC developed an EFS Learning and Collaboration Platform, which launched on 4 April 2014.

- By Marie-Lorry Coret and Cecilia Samoisi

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