Princess Lalla Hasnaa to UNESCO Conference on ESD: Education for sustainable development is both a challenging task and a long struggle [Maghreb Arab Press]

Morocco’s Princess Lalla Hasnaa underlined on Monday in Nagoya (Central Japan), that Education for sustainable development (ESD) is both a challenging task and a long struggle:

MAP logo“Education for sustainable development is both a challenging task and a long struggle since it targets attitudes and seeks to change reflexes and modes of behavior in our societies,” said Her Royal Highness before the UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development, organized jointly with the Japanese government to mark the end of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014).

HRH Princess Lalla Hasnaa, who is taking part in this major event as guest of honor, said that Education for sustainable development is a task that calls for sustained, cross-generational momentum to fulfill the ambition of seeing the emergence of informed and committed global citizens who are responsible for their own future, stressing that “much remains to be done in the area of education for sustainable development.”

Her Royal Highness affirmed that “each one of us, according to our means or status, is called upon to make a contribution, however modest, and to show perseverance as part of a coherent, overall strategy.”

“Working towards the development of this coherent strategy and mustering the means required for success constitute the dual challenge we shall be faced with in the coming decade as new goals are proposed under the United Nations post-2015 Agenda,” said HRH Princess Lalla Hasnaa.

Her Royal Highness noted that “one of the main challenges in the area of education for sustainable development is that of pertinence and efficiency in the field; we want our efforts to be more than mere words, which sometimes have no tangible effect – however sincere they may be.”

“Explaining what we should do is not enough; we must lead by example in the field, in a coherent manner. To that end, an active pedagogical approach must be developed,” said Her Royal Highness.

She added that, in this process of learning through example, major national projects can have a positive ripple effect. This is clearly shown by the ambitious Moroccan solar project – the largest in the world – which arouses young school children’s and student’s interest in clean technology and leads to innovation contests at schools, solar car races and other similar praiseworthy initiatives.

HRH Princess Lalla Hasnaa explained that to educate and to take action: these are the two guiding principles that go hand in hand in all of the Foundation’s programs. It is the basis upon which the Foundation rallies all segments of society to support concrete local objectives that have a direct impact on the citizens as well as an important educational dimension. Indeed, the Foundation’s motto is “The environment is everyone’s concern”.

The Mohammed VI Foundation for Environment Protection shares the commitment to the spirit and values underpinning the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, Her Royal Highness said, adding that as soon as the Foundation was set up by His Majesty King Mohammed VI in 2001, its action anticipated the values and principles underpinning this Decade.

The Mohammed VI Foundation for Environment Protection reflects, above all, a desire at the highest level of the state to put the citizen at the heart of the country’s sustainable development strategy, said Her Royal Highness, noting that Morocco’s new Constitution refers explicitly to the right to sustainable development and to a healthy environment.

The participation of Her Royal Highness Lalla Hasnaa in this major event is a recognition for her tireless efforts in favor of education and sustainable development which were crowned by her appointment, in 2007, as UN ambassador of the Coast for the Euro-Mediterranean regional environment program (SMAP III), supported by UN.

The presence of HRH in this environmental event also highlights the role of the Mohammed VI Foundation for Environment Protection in efforts made by Morocco in the field of education and raising awareness on issues related to environment.

The Conference, held this Nov. 10-12, is meant to assess the results of the UN Decade of ESD, identify achievements, initiatives, networks and best practices, as well as stakeholders’ commitment. It is also aimed at launching the global action program post-2015 agenda…[Original story, subscription required]



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