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The final outputs of the Eco-Facilitator Strategic Partnership

The “Eco-Facilitators for the Sustainable Future” Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership which includes NGOs from Hungary, Spain, Slovakia and Romania finalized all of its 4 intellectual outputs in English.

The aim of the two year project that started in the summer of 2017 was to train as many eco-facilitators as possible, who can work ecologically and promote sustainable development, awareness in life and nature protection. In order to achieve this goal, several outputs were implemented, a training course in the form of a blended mobility was done in Biofalu, Máriahalom, Hungary for 40 facilitators, a blog was made to promote the local activities done by these now, eco-facilitators, a guidebook was made with more than 100 non formal activity methodology descriptions and an online searchable and updateable web platform was also made with these activities.

 

But what exactly is eco-facilitation? It aims to support a group of individuals in achieving their commonly agreed goals in a process or even in a meeting. The same as the bed provides the path for a river, we imagine facilitation as providing the frame for a group flow. It holds the stream securely and at the same time, it gives the freedom and rhythm. We believe that the pure fact that we work with people and groups gives us the opportunity to integrate the approach of ecologically conscious state. We, humans, have increasingly different feelings connected to the mindset of getting isolated not only from our surrounding nature, but also from each other. We are losing the 'oneness' with and within our nature. This loss causes disturbance and discomfort, though we all know that this is not the desired direction. Eco-facilitators are not only facilitators, trainers, educators, but also those who understand and take the lead in bringing the ecological approach in their everyday work with people. We never know who will be the next one to start thinking about and acting towards a more sustainable World!

Regarding the four outputs, here they are in more detail:

- The 5 days long training course in Biofalu, Máriahalom, Hungary for 40 participants focused on offering non-formal and eco knowledge to the youth workers and youth interested in facilitation. The image above shows the group in their first sessions.

- The blog of the local activities http://ecofacilitator.blogspot.com/ is a compendium of the activities that were facilitated by the youth workers who attended the training course. These were done in the local or regional communities of Hungary, Spain, Slovekia and Romania from where these facilitators are from and were done for target groups aged 2 to 70.

- The “EcoFacilitator's Guidebook - Collection of Activities with an ecological approach for trainers and facilitators” http://ata-ro.eu/images/Letolthetok/Ecofacilitators_Guidebook.pdf was made by the project coordinators from each country who gathered or came up with more than 100 non-formal eco-activity methodology descriptions. It is available in PDF in English and soon it will also be available in Romanian, Hungarian, Slovak and Spanish

- The web platform https://ecofacilitators.org/ is the online version of this guidebook in these 5 languages, which for now includes the more than 100 activities but which also has 2 innovative features, one being that the activities cn be searched for in many different ways (by tag, age group, topic, etc.) and that youth workers, facilitators and trainers can, not just look or activities, but also that they can add new ones using a very simple interface.

All these outputs were presented to a public of more than 100 youth workers, teachers, facilitators, media and other stakeholders, in Budapest on a 1 day long - highly successful - conference on the 25th of May 2019. We consider that all these outputs, but especially the last two are quite useful for the participants in the project but also the larger community interested in using non-formal activities with an eco-approach.

Stay tuned for the Romanian and Hungarian versions of the Guidebook and the Web-Platform. They are coming very soon.