Project’s coordinator: Vocational Training Center- Natural History Museum of the Lesvos Petrified Forest – GR.
Vocational Training Center of the Natural History Museum was established in December 2000. The Center is accommodated in the building of the Natural History Museum in Sigri. Sigri is a small village of 300 inhabitants near the western tip of Lesvos Island, North Aegean Sea. This dry and depopulated end of the Island of Lesvos, fairly lacking in vegetation and agriculture is the home of the autochthonous 20 million years old Petrified Forest of Lesvos. Recognizing the great environmental, geological and palaeontological value of the Petrified Forest of Lesvos, the Petrified Forest of Lesvos is a protected national monument according to Presidential Decree 433/1985 and part of the NATURA 2000 Network. Furthermore, the Petrified Forest of Lesvos is a founding member of the European Geopark Network since 2000 and it was included in the Global Geoparks Network of UNESCO in 2004.
Our learners include a. temporary employees working as Geopark staff (rangers, field guides), b. temporary workers who have to be retrained in new methodologies and skills, c. middle-aged unemployed women living in small villages with very few alternatives in finding jobs, who need to be taught and trained so that they could be self-occupied to serve the need of sustainable tourism enterprises within the protected area, d. young unemployed people who we could teach in finding jobs in the field of alternative tourism or in the conservation and preservation of the natural heritage of the area. These groups could do educational programs for pupils who visit the area, birdwatchers, hikers or mountain bikers.
Contact Person: Dr.Nickolaos ZOUROS , Professor at the University of the Aegean, Director of the Natural History Museum of the Lesvos Petrified Forest (NHMLPF) Address: 8th Noemvriou 17, PC 8110, Mytilene, Lesvos Island, GR
Associate Partner: Arouca European Geopark-PT
Arouca European Geopark is located in the region North of Portugal, specifically the sub-region of Entre-Douro e Vouga and belongs to district of Aveiro. This territory is mountainous and includes the mountains of Freita and Montemuro. Arouca Geopark is markedly rural with a population density of 73.8 inhab/km2 and may reach about 6 inhab/km2 in mountain areas.
AGA – Arouca Geopark Association according to its initial mission contributes to the protection, enhancement and promotion of the natural and cultural heritage with a special emphasis on the geoheritage of the area. AGA aim is to disseminate the gained scientific knowledge to the public and promote alternatives form of tourism towards to a sustainable development of the territory of Arouca Geopark.
Geoeducation is one of the cores of the Arouca Geopark’ strategy and it is a department of AGA – Arouca Geopark Association where four employees work actively. The promotion of this area aims to raise awareness of the local community and visitors, as well as the enhancement of a greater knowledge and approach of Geoparks to the population. In this sense the audience is diverse, from the school community (students, teachers, parents and remaining educational community) to the society in general.
For children and younger people are developed annually the Arouca Geopark Educational Programs, which include visits to the geopark Interpretive Centre’s (also open daily to the general public). The guided and interpreted fieldtrips are complemented with information about the geosites panels. At same time, educational games, school contests and thematic exhibitions are promoted (also open to the general public). Besides these educational projects, AGA edited three didactic and pedagogic books for disseminating Science, particularly Geology of the territory. In addition AGA promotes and organizes training courses on biodiversity and geodiversity addressed to teachers.
The increasing demand focused on Natural and Cultural Heritage of the region imposed the creation of an active group of Interpreters of the Arouca Geopark, which consists of professionals freelancers that annually receive specific training about the territory.
To achieve the Geoeducation goal, AGA made a documentary cycle «Geoparks – Territories of Science» broadcasted by a national channel contributed to the awareness and dissemination of educational potentialities of the territory and to the comprehension of the geopark concept by the community.
Contact Person:Dr. AntónioDuarte, Executive coordinator, AGA – Associação Geoparque Arouca.
Address:Rua Alfredo Vaz Pinto, Apartado 20, PC : 4540-118,Arouca, PT.
Associate Partner: Parco NaturaleRegionale del Beigua- IT.
In a territory rich in contrasts like Liguria, set between the mountains and the sea, Beigua Park – the largest regional park in Liguria – well represents the features of the region, where it is possible to find very different environments and landscapes not far one from the other: a spectacular balcony formed by mountains facing the sea, where nature, history, culture, and ancient traditions are elements of extraordinary value and interest.
The Beigua Geopark is one of the most interesting areas in Liguria from scientific, aesthetic and educational points of view and it is extremely important for the reconstruction of the geological history of Italy, especially for understanding the evolution of the Alps and their relationship with the Apennines.The highlights of the Beigua Geopark are:an extensive ophiolitic area with an Alpine metamorphic imprint that represents a fragment of original Jurassic oceanic basin that rarely crops out so diffusely in the Alps or Europe;impressive geomorphological features testifying to processes in a periglacial environment; fascinating and well-preserved fossiliferous deposits; different sites of mineralogical interest.
The Beigua Geopark district offers different activities and opportunities: visitor centres and information points, geological trails, guided fieldtrips, thematic exhibitions, special publications and guide-books, training courses, scientific research activities, environmental education programs aiming at a more detailed knowledge of the geological-geomorphological features of the territory.
The district of Beigua Geopark offers events and elements of interest whole the year around and it allows the visitor to choose the most suitable moment and the different kind of accommodation present in the territory: from farmhouse rentals to countryside hotel/hostels located right in the core of the protected area, from several inns and bed&breakfast which are frequent in the inland to the more luxury accommodation facilities located in the coastal Municipalities of the Geopark.
Contact Person: Dr. Maurizio Burlando Director, Parco Naturale Regionale Del Beigua (PNRB).
Address: Via G. Marconi 165, PC 16011, Arenzano (GE), IT
Associate Partner: North Pennines AONB Partnership- UK.
Geo-education in the North Pennines AONB and Global Geopark
The North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and Global Geopark is a large protected landscape in the north of England (UK). It is an area characterised by high moorlands and wild fells, waterfalls, green dales, stone walls, scattered villages and fantastic wildlife, geology and industrial heritage.
Geo-education is one of the important strands of the work of the North Pennines AONB and Global Geopark and it is a component of almost every project that is developed. The Geopark addresses both formal and informal education; the first through work with schools and the second through a wide range of activities.
In all our informal education activities we want to have our audience to have a good experience first and learning is something that is almost
incidental: visitors on holiday in the Geopark are looking for a nice day when they come on one of our guided tours or when they visit our local lead mining museum at Killhope. They learn about the Geopark, its geology and the way people have used that geology while they are having a fun day out.
To support geo-education in schools we have developed educational resource materials which are closely linked to the UK National Curriculum for schools at primary and secondary levels. These give teachers the activities and background to use our geology and landscape to teach a variety of subjects. Guided school visits are supported either at the Geopark’s Bowlees Visitor Centre and picnic site, which has a range of geological and natural features, or sites managed by Geopark partners.
Contact Person:Peter SAMSOM, Deputy Director of the North Pennines AONB Partnership
Address: North Pennines AONB Partnership, Weardale Business Centre, 1 Martin Street, Stanhope. County Durham. PC DL13 2UY UK