Being a UN Volunteer allows you to perform a wide range of activities and have direct contact with people while getting involved with the population to tackle challenges to peace and development. Children are always an important target group.
With this in mind, we held a workshop to promote issues relevant to children, such as responsible consumption and sustainable production and distribution systems of goods we consume in the Oruro department. These issues are an important part of the environmental problems and health consequences we currently face.
Through our work with children we provide information and raise awareness to help them better understand all the consequences of our daily consumption. We presented the alternatives we have as citizens to stop ourselves from being part of the problem and start becoming part of the solution.
The workshop held at the Jorge Oblitas school provided an opportunity to explain the importance of saving energy, water and fuel, eating healthy food, recycling paper and separating garbage. The goal of these actions is to improve habits in general - while raising awareness about the importance of responsible consumption. This will help children understand the importance of these matters so that, ideally they will take that understanding to their families.
An interactive video on responsible consumption, explanations from the UN Volunteers, group dynamics exercises and active participation from the children helped to pass the message on smoothly. The whole time we could see how they received, responded to and put into practice all they learned.
The importance of working on the issue of responsible consumption with children is due in large part to the fact that they readily receive the information and then immediately replicate it throughout their environment. Equally important is the understanding that UN Volunteers must interact with children, as they represent the countrys present and future.
Bio: Erland Antonio Mercado was born in Oruro (Bolivia). He has a degree in Industrial Engineering with a specialization in Social Projects. Since April 2011, he has been a UN Volunteer for UNDPs ART programme (Articulación de Redes Territoriales) supporting governability and territorial development in Bolivia.