Preserving the palm tree in Côte d'Ivoire through envi-ronmental education at primary level

The CSRS through the project "Palmiers Solidaires" organized two workshops at Divo on March 27th and 28th concerning the validation of a teaching guide on environmental education in schools and the organization of promotional days of   Garden of palms, work of the said project.

Established in Divo since 2014, the Palmier Solidaire project was born from the collaboration between Swiss researchers of the Conservatory and Botanical Garden of the City of Geneva (CJB), Ivorian researchers from CSRS and the Association for the Renovation of Dida Culture (ARCULDI). It targets several objectives, including the preservation, promotion and protection of the biocultural heritage of the Dida around biodiversity and the environment of palms and other useful plants.

To achieve this, the stakeholders (Project Coordinators, Divo Primary Education Inspectorates, teachers, etc.) involving in the project committed themselves to the introduction of environmental education in primary schools in the city of Divo and in the district of Lôh-Djiboua. Therefore, the design of a teaching guide for environmental education was initiated. The first workshop aimed to validate the guide before its intended use for the start of the school year 2019-2020.

Workshop participants were very satisfied with the outcome and expressed their desire for early implementation. An official presentation of the guide is foreseen during promotional days of the Palm Garden.

The Palm Garden is a training center for artisanal techniques from the world of useful palms of Côte d’Ivoire, namely the palms raffia, rattan and oil palm traditional and environmental education. It is composed of several buildings, an ethnobotanical garden of useful palms of Côte d’Ivoire and their companion plants (dyeing, medicinal, symbolic, etc.) and workshops of production/sale of objects made from palm trees including loincloth raffia (or loincloth Dida). Built on an area of 3500 m2, it is located in the center of Divo and is opened to the public.

The second workshop dealt with the organization of   promotional days of the Palm Garden. The project "Palmiers Solidaires" wishes to make the center well-known, for a better approval of its stakes by the populations and palm craftsmen of the area. The organizing committee was able to refine the preparations for the event scheduled for September 2019, during which the environmental education guide will be officially presented.

The promotional days will be held at Divo and in Abidjan, specifically at the Embassy of Switzerland in Côte d'Ivoire, which, on behalf of the CJB, the project's donor, agreed to host the event.

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