SADC Regional Environmental Education Programme

Learning for a Sustainable Future

The SADC Regional Environmental Education Programme, now in existence for Seventeen Years will be represented at the upcoming World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development.  It has been selected as one of five official exhibitions for Africa at the World Conference on ESD.  The Programme will also be involved in co-ordinating a workshop on ESD Policy, and in the Global Regional Centres of Expertise Pre-Conference, where a number of SADC RCEs will be present.  The Programme will also participate in the Post-Conference on ESD and Teacher Education, where the SADC ESD Teacher Education Network's activities will be presented. The Conference marks the end of the UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development, and the launch of a new Global Action Plan for Education for Sustainable Development.  As shown below, the SADC REEP has achieved much in the past decade, and has been an active contributor to the UN DESD. 

The programme will be displaying some of its most recent publications: 

'Learning Tomorrow for Today: Sustainable Development Learning Processes in Sub-Saharan Africa ', by Justin Lupele and Heila Lotz-Sisitka.  This book uses cases and literature review to provide an overview of environment and sustainability learning processes in Sub-Saharan Africa. It scopes what is known about these learning processes, and develops a conceptual framework for further research in this area. The report also proposes that environment and sustainability learning processes, when carefully considered, may contribute significantly to improvement of educational quality and relevance in Sub-Saharan Africa. 

'Re-Views on Social Learning Literature: A Monograph for Social Learning Researchers in Natural Resources Management and Environmental Education'. Edited by Heila Lotz-Sisitka, with foreword by Arjen E. Wals. This monograph provides four different views on social learning literature. Rather than seeking to be comprehensive, the reviews provide views on the social learning literature, providing access to a wide body of literature(s) on social learning. This monograph should be useful for researchers interested in social learning in the fields of environmental education and natural resources management. 

'Future Capacity Building: Capacity Assessment for Environmental Policy Implementation'.  Mutizwa Mukute et al.  This report presents the key findings, conclusions and recommendations of a study that was conducted to assess the capacities of the southern African Development Community (SADC) and its Member States (Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe) to implement international environment, sustainable development and education agreements.  The purpose of the report is to inform and increase the relevance, effectiveness and impact of capacity building for policy implementation. 

'Learning for a Sustainable Future: Fifteen Years of Swedish-SADC Co-operation in Environment and Sustainability Education'. This report on fifteen years of the programme's implementation captures the story and contents of the programme over this time.  The Southern African Development Community (SADC) leadership recognised the importance of environmental education in enabling cross-country co-operation for a sustainable future when they set up the SADC Regional Environmental Education Programme. Forming a partnership with Sweden in 1996/7 enabled the programme to flourish. The story told in this book is of the 15 year SADC-Sida partnership. It is also a story of the kinds of relationships and practices that need to be developed if humanity is to learn to build a sustainable future. 

AND … SOON TO BE RELEASED:  The SADC REEP have been collaborating with GIZ to develop an innovative capacity building programme on 'Climate Change Adaptation in Transfrontier Conservation Areas in southern Africa'. This programme involves a course on climate change adaptation that is specifically designed for southern African transfronteir conservation areas. It includes four modules and workplace based assignment. It focusses on interpreting climate data and assessing climate risk and vulnerability, planning and implementing climate change adaptation strategies, using adaptive management approaches and expanding participation in climate change adaptation.  The course is designed for a range of stakeholders who seek to strengthen climate change adaptation and mitigation practices in conservation contexts. The course is practical, and is designed to actively facilitate workplace-based and community-based action and change.


Background to SADC-REEP

In 1993, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Environment and Land Management Sector (ELMS) initiated a programme to support environmental education processes in the southern African region. The initial phase of this programme included a series of workshops involving environmental education practitioners in the region. The first workshop was held in Windhoek, Namibia in 1994 and the second in Howick, South Africa in 1996. These workshops were complemented by other research processes designed to assess the state of environmental education in the region. Based on information gathered during this initial phase a formal programme document was developed and submitted to the SADC Council of Ministers for approval.

The Council of Ministers ratified the proposal and agreed that the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) should act as implementing agency of the programme. Following approval in August 1996 the document was finalised in December 1996 (Harare) and submitted to the Swedish International Development Developing Agency (Sida) for funding. Sida found the Programme’s recommendations appropriate for responding to the urgent need for environmental education processes in the SADC region and agreed to fund the first three years of operation from July 1997 to June 2000.

In 2001, after participatory discussions the programme document was further developed and approved by the National Network Representatives in April 2001. Sida funded the second phase of the programme from 2002 to 2005, with two extensions in 2006 and 2007. A new project proposal was submitted to Sida, and the Programme is now funded to the end of 2011. In addition the Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Danida), USAID and IUCN (The World Conservation Union), also provide financial support for different components of the Programme. The Regional Environmental Education Programme is a project of the SADC Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources (FANR) Directorate.

Programme Structure

The purpose of the Regional Environmental Education (EE) Programme is to enable environmental education practitioners in the SADC region to strengthen environmental education processes for equitable and sustainable environmental management choices. This will be achieved through enhanced and strengthened environmental education policy, networking, resource materials, training capacity, and research and evaluation.

The SADC Regional EE Programme consists of five major components with different sub-projects. Each component has its specific objectives as follows.

Networking and Partnerships
To support Environmental Education (EE) and Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) processes through partnerships, networking, seed funding, knowledge resources, exchange and interactions among EE and ESD practitioners within the SADC region and beyond.

To create an enabling environment for policy synergy and inclusion of environmental and sustainable development concerns into regional and national education policies, strategies and systems and to include EE and ESD into regional and national development plans.

Training (Capacity Building)
To support institutional and professional capacity building processes to respond to environmental and sustainable development challenges through improved EE and ESD processes.

Resource Materials Development
To support the development of institutional and professional capacity within the SADC region to access, use and develop appropriate EE and ESD resource materials including appropriate innovations in information and communication technologies (ICTs).

Evaluation and Research
To support evaluation, research, and innovation in EE and ESD processes through enhanced research and evaluation capacity and reflexive practice at the regional and national level.

Southern African Development Community (SADC) Countries


SADC REEP - South African Development Community Countries

SADC Regional Environmental Education Programme