Con Cuong, April 2, 2021, Pu Mat National Park and Save Vietnam’s Wildlife, in collaboration with Con Cuong Department of Education and Training and Con Cuong Youth Union, successfully organized the inaugural conference of the Education Program to Raise Awareness of Nature and Wildlife Conservation in Pu Mat National Park. With the participation of nearly 40 people, the workshop has successfully launched the Conservation Education Program for students at primary and secondary schools in the buffer zone to raise their awareness about not consuming wildlife products illegally and influence them to join hands to protect Pu Mat forest.

Teachers comments on the implementation plan and program agenda. ©SVW/Ho Thi Kim Lan

Mr. Luu Trung Kien, the Deputy Director of Pu Mat National Park, stated at the seminar: “Pu Mat National Park is honored to be one of the leading units in developing and executing the implementation plan for the Directive 29/CT-TTg dated July 23, 2020 issued by the Prime Minister on urgent measures to tighten the management of wildlife. To properly carry out this undertaking, during this whole time, Pu Mat National Park has increased law enforcement by patrolling, reduced illegal hunting and using of wildlife products, supported alternative livelihood development and promoted educational activities to raise community awareness. The Education Program to Raise Awareness of Nature and Wildlife Conservation in Pu Mat National Park that takes place at schools in the buffer zone is one of the key activities of Pu Mat National Park, in cooperation with Con Cuong Department of Education and Training and Save Vietnam’s Wildlife in the near future.

Mr. Nguyen Van Thai, the Executive Director of Save Vietnam’s Wildlife shared: “Raising awareness and educating the community, especially children in the buffer zone of Pu Mat National Park is one of our long-term strategies that aim at forming a future generation with positive attitudes and behaviors towards wildlife while reducing the exploitation of natural resources in Pu Mat forest.” Ms. Le Thi Kim Ngan, the Education Outreach Coordinator of Save Vietnam’s Wildlife added: This conference has commenced a series of educational activities to raise awareness for children in the buffer zone of Pu Mat National Park. We aspire to ignite their pride and love for nature, thereby motivating them and their families to take actions to protect wildlife and Pu Mat forest.”

The photo exhibition at the workshop attracts many teachers. ©SVW/Ho Thi Kim Lan

The workshop was a great success with the participation and support of nearly 40 representatives from Pu Mat National Park, Save Vietnam’s Wildlife, Con Cuong Education and Training Department and Con Cuong Youth Union, together with the representatives from School Board Directors and teachers in charge of the Youth Union of 13 primary and secondary schools in Yen Khe, Chau Khe, Mon Son communes and Con Cuong town. The plan for implementing the Education Program has been highly agreed with 5 main activities from March 2021 to May 2022, including (1) Social research on awareness, attitude and behavior of students towards nature and wildlife conservation; (2) Nature Conservation Events – After-school activities; (3) “Join me to protect Pu Mat forest” student club; (4) Nature interpretation field trips; and (5) Kid Presenters program. The participants have contributed positively to perfect the plan for effective coordination among related parties to carry out the Education Program. In the afternoon of the same day, the participants also visited the Open Museum of Nature and Culture, the Wildlife Rescue Center and the Peripheral Botanical Garden to learn more about the conservation efforts of Pu Mat National Park and Save Vietnam’s Wildlife.

Teachers visit rescue area of the turtoises. ©SVW/Ho Thi Kim Lan.

Mr. Le Thanh An, the Head of Con Cuong Education and Training Department, speaking at the end of the conference: “Con Cuong Education and Training Department, together with all the related schools, agree with the plan to coordinate with Pu Mat National Park and Save Vietnam’s Wildlife in the implementation of the Education Program to Raise Awareness of Nature and Wildlife Conservation in Pu Mat National Park. This is a very meaningful and practical program in response to the environmental education program in schools carried out by the Ministry of Education and Training, as well as general policies of the Government in the field of nature conservation and wildlife management. The program promises to be a great chance for more than 4,500 students in the buffer zone to gain knowledge, train their soft skills and proudly contribute to the protection of Pu Mat nature.