Vanadzor, 27.04-05.05.2013 - The participants were selected by a jury with the aim to include as many communities as possible. The jury succeeded to reach the goal and the seminar covered a big territory of Armenia and the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, from where we did not have a single participant last year. The jury also succeeded in having a good mix of relatively experienced and inexperienced participants.
One of the successful points of the seminar was that instead of 20 participants we had 25 and thus giving a chance for 5 additional people. In comparison with the last year, the gender balance was much better: 9 out of 25 participants were male (while in 2012 only 3 out of 20 had been male).
Thus, 25 participants are implementing 13 projects; 4 of them being single projects, while the rest are group project.
Yeghegnadzor, 23.06-29.06, 2013 - During six days, 25 participants came to the Practice Meeting in Yeghegnadzor, where they met with their six mentors.
Eventually, EcoLab had 11 projects as 2 projects were merged. There are 3 single projects, which will be supported by community stakeholders and members as well as volunteers.
It is noteworthy, that almost all of the EcoLab projects have local support from different NGOs, INGOs, local self government bodies, etc.
Yerevan, 04.10.2013 - EcoBus - The idea of Ecobus initiative was born during EcoLab country program 2013. A group of young people have cleaned and repaired an old bus located next to the Lori regional library. It was done not for driving the bus but for creating an eco-corner there. The bus has been painted and decorated with flowers. There are paintings and posters on the walls that reflect several social and ecological issues of Vanadzor. Thus the Bus serves as an actual stage for various discussions, debates, workshops, and forum theatre performances on sustainable development and environmental protection. The main goal of this interesting and creative initiative is to give a second life to useless things and use them in a way that benefits the whole community. Thanks to EcoBus, Vanadzor has an amazing centre for eco-entertainment. Feel free to visit it whenever you are in Armenia!
Eco Bus Stop - Dalarik community of Armavir region has an Eco Bus Stop. The project was carried out within the framework of EcoLab country program of Joint Civic Education. The construction of the bus stop was initiated by the member of the community Anna Mkrtchyan and was carried with the involvement of the community volunteers. It is made of plastic bottles, other recycled materials and flowers planted in different useless things. The main goal is recycling and sustainable development as well as the integration of the community members into solving the common problems and making it a better place to be.
VELOCITY - From July 2013 “Eco Food with Eco Transport or VELOCITY” project is being carried out in Aragel community of Kotayk region within the framework of EcoLab country program of Joint Civic Education. The participants of the project together with many young people from the village deliver ecologically clean food thus disseminating the idea of sustainable development and promoting organic farming, healthy lifestyle and culture of cycling.
For the media coverage of the projects please follow the links:
Gyumri, 17- 23. 11, 2013 - The Reflecting Meeting served as a brilliant conclusion to the whole program as the participants not only had a retrospective view of their 8 months collaboration with EcoLab but also had a chance to present their success stories to a bigger audience. On November 21, the EcoLab participants made public presentation on their projects to their peers, mentors, facilitators and representatives of several national and international NGO, such as World Vision Armenia, Armenian Progressive Youth, Institute for Human Rights and Democracy, UNICEF Armenia, UN Office in Armenia, Armenian Environmental Network and IG Alpbach Armenia.
The participant exhibited envious creativity in their presentation by finding numerous alternative ways of presenting their projects. Some used the method of theatre, others Talk show and whatnot! The aim of the public event was to present our projects, share our vision, find partners among the guests and insure the sustainability and continuation of EcoLab projects.
In this forum the EcoLab alumni proved that they have evolved from being inert community members to citizens who are equipped to function as agents of change in their respective communities.
The application procedure for participating in EcoLab has started. For the selection criteria and more detailed information about the project please visit the webpage for the Call for Applications.
Please note that the deadline is April 1, 2014.
Berlin, October 2013 - How to connect sustainable development education with the promotion of civil engagement? The handbook on environment and civil engagement is online available. The print version will be launched in November.
Armenia, March 2013 - In March 2013, Country coordinator of EcoLab project Yana Mkrtchyan made several filed visits to a number of different towns and villages in Aragatsotn, Lori, Tavush, Gegharkunik, Shirak, Syunik regions and the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. The visits were hosted by the active NGOs, international organizations and youth centers of the respective regions (World Vision Armenia, Partnership and Teaching NGO, Artsakh Youth Development Center, etc.) and were mainly attended by the youth. During the meetings the attendants got acquainted with the topic of the project, its objectives, target group and application procedure.
Project Alumni of 2012 country program also made presentations about EcoLab in Vayots Dzor and Armavir regions.
Due to the field visits the number of applicants doubled compared with the previous year, most importantly there were applications from 10 regions of Armenia and the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.
Berlin, September 2013 - Joint Civic Education and its impact have been assessed by the Centre for Social Investment at the University of Heidelberg. In order to get an impression of our work and impact in the region, please find the publication of the Analysis of the Impact of a Community and Democracy Education Programme in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia and Turkey here.
Lori region, Armenia, May 2013. EcoLab has been misused in a reportage in favour of Teghut copper-molybdenum mining project of Vallex F.M. Establishment. Please see the statement on behalf of the EcoLab project, its partner organisations and donors concerning the misrepresentation of the project, its partners and donors' names. Access the video reportage here (in Armenian).
Yerevan, February 2013 –The call for applications for 2013 has been launched on February 18 and is open until March 17. For further information as well as the application form (in Armenian) please access here. For specific questions, please contact Yana Mkrtchyan, coordinator of EcoLab: mkrtchyan[at]joint-civic-education.net
Berlin, December 2012 - Joint Civic Education has launched empowerment programs in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia (Northern Caucasus) and Turkey (Eastern Anatolia) to support young people's civic involvement and to qualify them in a way that no school or university can match. Moreover, the social leaders involved in our programs will have the chance to meet colleagues from the other countries involved and, doing so, have the opportunity to enhance their scope of action.