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The Project Education for Sustainable Development of Regional Tourism 'Eco-SmaRT' is a consequence of research done in partner countries. All the organization function in touristic areas where natural environment has been endanger by touristic activities. One of the reason for this is lack of proper education about sustainable development among adult learners who are no longer under influence of formal education. Those adults are making choices about their traveling plans as well as including their families, therefore they are providing touristic cohort in their regions. There is a need to approach adult lifelong learning institutions and encourage them to implement non-formal education for sustainable development in tourism in their scope of work.
The Partner Organizations are: Enterprises with focus on Eco-tourism, healthy lifestyle education and sustainable green energy sectors Foundations, Human Resources and Project network, Development Companies, Public Adult Education Centres and Universities. The objectives of the project were as following:
- raise awareness of public regarding eco-tourism and influence their travel choices and behaviours,
- transfer information on the impact of tourism on the environment,
- provide knowledge about regional diversity and significance of volunteer activities to preserve it,
- provide participants with the knowledge on tourist ethics according to World Tourism Organisation.
- exchange of experience and showing best practices on personal engagement in development of local communities,
- with the usage of regional resources of participants to create a work on volunteering in eco-tourism (group work)
- motivate participants to become conscious and active citizens, 32 participants, adult learners, teachers, tutors, trainers from partners' countries had an opportunity to gain theoretical knowledge, and work together during blended-learning activities on case studies and provide other participants with their experience. Based on that knowledge learners planned their own ideas on voluntary involvement in preserving their regional heritage. The workshop was designed for adults from countries participating in the LLP program, who are interested in volunteering work, eco-tourism and sustainable development of their regions. The workshop was opened to everybody, regardless in relation to the attained education, or social disadvantages. Workshop’s working language was English, however some translation was also provided in Polish and Turkish. The main activities during the project duration were:
- development of training toolkit for teachers on involvement of ESD to their education,
- workshops for learners about eco-tourism, eco-touristic activities, volunteering, organization and management of touristic activities in the region, creating eco-path,
- development of ideas of eco-path and presenting them to local governments for implementations.
In terms of the pedagogical approach trainers used individual impact method as correcting and enriching knowledge, discussion, and also group interaction. These methods were applied to motivate them to active work in the interest of their local communities and thanks to that also of the entire world. In terms of the didactic approach there were used form of lectures, team work, problem solving, individual work, discussion, case study, expositions on the workshop’ subjects, and educational trip to the eco-tourist places.
The main tangible results are: eco-path prepared by learners, events, selection of case studies, documentation of study visits.
The impact and longer term benefits:
- All project participants strengthen their capacity on building in eco-tourism as well as deepened their knowledge on sustainable tourism.
- The Project Coordinator and the project partners are experienced in running strategic partnership projects and they are inspired to make further links and design similar new projects.