Donegal teens reach National Environmental Awards

Sunny Side Out from St. Columba’s College, Stranorlar

Sunny Side Out from St. Columba’s College, Stranorlar

Six youth projects from Donegal have reached the final of this year’s Young Environmentalist Awards.

Almost 500 applications were received, which is a record breaking number despite the covid interruptions.

ECO-UNESCO will be announcing the winner’s virtually on May 21 through YouTube live and social media platforms. 

The Young Environmentalist Awards (YEA) recognises and rewards young people aged 10-18 who have taken environmental action and created projects that will help solve environmental issues.

The event sees more than 4,000 participants each year. Although schools are closed during this time, young people are still continuing their environmental projects at home. 

Some of the Donegal finalists include: Sunny Side Out from St. Columba’s College, Stranorlar who are working towards an energy efficient school, The CLI-MATES from Scoil Mhuire Buncrana and Sópa Sócúlach from Gairmscoil Mhic Diaramada who have created biodegradable and hypoallergenic soap bars that are packaged using environmentally friendly brown paper and recycled ribbons and twine. 

Elaine Nevin, Director of ECO-UNESCO said: “We are delighted at the quality of applications this year and we cannot wait to announce this year’s winners. Young people are still taking eco action and continuing their projects at home, despite the pandemic. 

"In light of this we are holding an ECO Week to celebrate the young people who are enthusiastic about making an environmental difference.”

An event that usually brings schools and community groups together from all over Ireland to showcase their projects, will now be a week-long celebration while Covid-19 restrictions are in place.

ECO Week 2020 will be held from May 18-22 and will include a range of environmental workshops, well-being activities, talks, and challenges for young people alongside the YEA Winner announcements.

The theme of ECO Week 2020 is Food, Fitness, Fashion and your Future. The aim of ECO Week to celebrate the achievements of young activists, to allow young people to explore career opportunities in environmentalism and to educate them on a range of environmental topics. 

For more information on the Young Environmentalist Awards please go to www.yea.ie 

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