About Green Steps

This multimedia toolkit aims to raise public awareness about sustainable lifestyles, citizens’ environmental rights, and changes that individuals can make in their everyday lives to contribute to sustainable development. The primary targets are members of civil society organisations, but there is also valuable information for educators, students and families. The Green Steps awareness-raising materials, which will be tailored to individual countries in the future, are divided into four sections: a virtual tour around a number of locations typically visited in the course of everyday activities; information on 25 to 30 topics related to environmental protection and sustainable development; a series of around 50 factsheets that can be used in educational and group activities; and an encyclopedia containing information on up to 300 species common to Europe.

TEACHING MATERIALS

 Green Steps factsheets: Agriculture

 Green Steps factsheets: Air

 Green Steps factsheets: Biodiversity

 Green Steps factsheets: Chemicals

 Green Steps factsheets: Climate Change

 Green Steps factsheets: Consumer Society

 Green Steps factsheets: Corporate Social Responsibility

 Green Steps factsheets: Desertification

 Green Steps factsheets: Eco-ethics

 Green Steps factsheets: Electromagnetic Radiation

 Green Steps factsheets: Energy

 Green Steps factsheets: Forestry

 Green Steps factsheets: Health

 Green Steps factsheets: Industry

 Green Steps factsheets: Noise

 Green Steps factsheets: Ozone Depletion

 Green Steps factsheets: Population

 Green Steps factsheets: Poverty

 Green Steps factsheets: Radioactivity

 Green Steps factsheets: Right to Know and Participate

 Green Steps factsheets: Soil

 Green Steps factsheets: Sustainable Development

 Green Steps factsheets: Tourism

 Green Steps factsheets: Transport

 Green Steps factsheets: Urbanisation

 Green Steps factsheets: Waste

 Green Steps factsheets: Water

 Green Steps factsheets: Wetlands

PROJECT MODULES

The Green Steps goals are to build capacities, transfer know-how and promote the concept for sustainable development both in Central and Eastern Europe and worldwide.

The project comprises three basic phases:

Feasibility study

This phase includes meeting with local partners such as national, regional and local institutions/organisations that will play a significant role in the following phase of the project. Preliminary plans, as well as the structure and content of Green Steps, are defined, with the aim of harmonising the product with specific national needs and challenges before sustainable development.

Country-specific Green Steps development
This phase includes the establishment of a national working group (NWG) made up of experts in environment, sustainable development and civic society from national institutions and universities, as well as representatives of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). The NWG works on selection of different Green Steps components and their adaptation and up-grading for the needs of the country specific product. National experts provide input on the environmental and sustainable development issues of greatest relevance to the particular country and contribute specific case studies.

Training and Green Steps dissemination
A train-the-trainers seminar is organised, at which local partners are trained by international and local experts on how to train the future users of the Green Steps multimedia product.  The materials developed in the course of the project are handed over to local partners who are responsible for distributing them to CSOs, educational and information centers and other educational institutions.

STRUCTURE

The Green Steps awareness-raising materials are divided into four sections:

  • A virtual tour around a number of locations typically visited in the course of everyday activities.
  • Information on 28 topics related to environmental protection and sustainable development.
  • A series of 49 factsheets that can be used in educational and group activities.
  • An encyclopedia containing information on 232 species common to Central Europe, and to Belarus in particular.

In addition, users can assess their level of awareness regarding environmental and sustainable development issues by playing the interactive game or completing the quiz.
Locations – Most of the locations (home, supermarket, school, park/restaurant, vacation, transport) feature a number of interactive spots, which users can discover by moving their mouse over the illustration. By clicking on the hotspots, users can access information and ideas about environmentally friendly and sustainable behaviour, presented through texts, spoken messages and video clips.

Town square – By clicking on the chess pieces on the giant chessboard in the town square, users will discover 10 dilemmas. For each of the 10 situations described, a number of conflicting interests and possible solutions are outlined. Users are asked to form their own opinions and present their own point of view. In some cases, the viewpoints of a various community stakeholders (local authorities, the business sector, citizens, environmentalists, car owners, cyclists and students) are presented.

Workplace – In the workplace, representatives of 12 different professions are illustrated, moving from floor to floor in an interactive lift. Clicking on the figures gives users access to background information; details of the environmental and health impacts of each profession and its contribution to social development; and tips on how to reduce or minimise potential negative impacts.

Library - The library contains a variety of background resources for users of the toolkit:

  • An encyclopedia, containing information on up to 300 species of plants and animals. The information is presented in the form of texts, photographs, video clips, illustrations and sounds.
  • Information on 28 topics related to the environment and social development (air, water, soil, biodiversity, urbanisation, noise, waste, chemicals, energy, transport, industry, agriculture, forestry, tourism, climate change, ozone depletion, wetlands, electromagnetic fields, consumerism, health, citizens’ rights, sustainable development, radioactivity, desertification, population growth, poverty, corporate social responsibility, and eco-ethics). In each case, general information is complemented by information specific to Belarus.
  • A series of more than 50 factsheets connected to the 28 topics. These printable pdf files are a valuable resource for group work and educational activities.
  • A quiz comprising around 80 questions related to the information provided in the toolkit. Each time the quiz is accessed, 10 random questions appear, making it a useful tool for assessing users’ level of awareness both before and after exploring the other Green Steps features.
  • Direct access to the texts on the 12 professions.
  • Direct access to the 10 dilemmas.
  • “What’s that sound?”, a game in which users hear a sound and are asked to decide which animal is responsible for making it.
  • Direct access to the complete collection of video clips featured in the encyclopedia and locations sections of the DVD.

COUNTRIES

To date, Green Steps has been introduced in

  • Belarus