Zambia is committed to educating its communities on climate change. On the 26th and 27th of February 2020 the country took concrete steps towards finalising its National Climate Change Learning Strategy. A two-day workshop was organized by the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR), with support from Zambia Environmental Agency (ZEMA), Zambia Climate Change Network (ZCCN), UNDP and UN CC:Learn, and took place in Chisamba, a small town near the capital Lusaka.
The event brought together representatives from several ministries, civil society, media and the private sector. For two days, they engaged in activities and discussions focusing ultimately on developing an Action Plan for the next five years (2020 – 2025) to support the country in its aims to strengthen individual and institutional capacities for NDC and NAP implementation.
The fruitful partnership between the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, ZEMA and ZCCN leading the National Climate Change Learning Strategy development process has highlighted the importance of raising awareness about climate change within the local communicates, given the threats that this poses to Zambia.
Following the launch of the project in July 2019, a background report and learning needs assessment were completed and these findings informed the discussions on the Action Plan as well as identifying the priority actions to be immediately implemented. The Strategic Objectives of the strategy will focus on:
- Awareness-raising: the use of innovative ways of communicating climate change to ensure that all segments of the communities have access to climate change information;
- Capacity building: the need to not only target individuals but also, strengthen institutional capacities to implement climate change programmes; and
- Mainstreaming of climate change into national curricula: to take advantage of the existing political will on integrating climate change learning into national curricula.
Moving forward the input received from the workshop will be consolidated into the first draft of the National Climate Change Learning strategy to be shared with stakeholders for review in March 2020. Two priority activities have already been identified to be immediately implemented as the strategy is being finalised. The two priority areas include the training of journalists on reporting about climate change; awareness raising campaigns on climate smart agriculture projects; and additional Youth Climate Dialogues for Zambian students.
The UN CC:Learn project in Zambia started in 2019, and aims to strengthen learning and skills development to address climate change in the country. The project has a strong knowledge and regional experience sharing focus, building on the experience of Malawi and Zimbabwe.