As valid in one or another way for all units within the project our main focus is information. Information for everybody – from the youngest kids to adult villagers, leaders or decision makers. What the work of the Awareness Raising Unit wants to enhance is the common knowledge and consciousness about the value of the Hin Nam No NPA as an ecosystem and how the conservation of this ecosystem contributes to the wellbeing of people, today and in the future. We believe that awareness or consciousness is one of the main keys to convince and make understand what we are doing in HNN NPA, why we are doing this and why every single person should and can contribute to the success story. Not for the sake of the project, but for the benefits of everybody. Sounds ambitious? Yes, it is. Trying to make this happen the unit is working with different methods and delivering different channels for information transmission.
Celebrating environmental days with schools and villagers, broadcasting environmental information on the radio at provincial and district level, elaboration of specific didactic material for teachers in the rural area of HNN, working on sign posts, spreading HNN related messages via leaflets, posters, and so on. Somehow our work could be called environmental education but we try to be more HNN specific. Not only transmit general knowledge about ecosystems, climate change, biodiversity or environmental conservation but try to make understand that everybody, especially the villagers that live around the HNN NPA and that partially live from the natural resources of the HNN NPA, strongly depend on the conservation of this unique ecosystem. It should become clear to everybody that conservation does not only mean restrictions. Conservation is a way of responsible management and wise utilization of the specific set of natural resources in the HNN NPA. Thus, conservation cannot be taken as something isolated or something fixed and even less as something working on its own by mere restrictions.
The conservation efforts in the HNN NPA have to be dynamic and adopted to the specific needs of the population respecting the right for economic and social development but sustainably assuring the functions and services delivered by the ecosystem and environment. To put it in a nutshell, the work of the Awareness Raising Unit is not just some funny kind of entertainment – it is the attempt to provide the necessary information for the stakeholders of HNN NPA to be able to determine their own future.