Artful messages

Reem Leila , Tuesday 25 Oct 2022

Children are expressing their awareness of the environment through art, reports Reem Leila

Children arts

 

Mustafa Assem, a kindergartner, recently painted a picture of the planet as all its trees, which are protecting earth from heat and sun, are disappearing.

“I watched a cartoon on the dangers of trees disappearing from the world. Trees are important as they provide us with shade and help in reducing the atmosphere’s temperature,” Assem said.

His picture was part of an art exhibition held by the Ministry of Education at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation on 16 October. Organised in cooperation with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the exhibit aims to introduce the world to climate change through painting and artwork.

Under the slogan “Egypt’s children’s message to the world” the exhibition comes within the framework of the country’s preparations to host the 27th session of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27) scheduled to convene in Sharm El-Sheikh next month.

During the exhibition, Minister of Education Reda Hegazi noted that it was an opportunity for school students to express their views and concerns on climate and environmental issues. The exhibition aims to raise awareness among 25 million students to preserve their environment by giving training courses on climate change to 300,000 teachers in government schools, Hegazi said.

More than 1,000 students from all the country’s governorates participated in the contest and submitted more than 1,700 paintings displayed at the exhibition, he added.

The initiative is an inspiring one, as students learn how to express their views on climate change through creativity that drives them to action, Jeremy Hopkins, UNICEF representative in Egypt, said. “We believe that children can find innovative solutions to climate change from their surroundings which are relevant to their communities,” Hopkins said.

The exhibition is the result of a three-year effort with the Ministry of Education to develop the educational curricula to include issues such as climate change and biodiversity, which are complex global issues, in order to create awareness about these issues for future generations, Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad said. The students’ artworks will decorate the walls of the COP27 venue, Fouad added.

*A version of this article appears in print in the 27 October, 2022 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.

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