Minister Noonan Launches New Electric Car for Education & Community Engagement in Glenveagh National Park
As part of its remit to raise awareness of Ireland’s biodiversity and protected sites for nature, the Education Centre and Programme are today launching their new electric vehicle which will be used to visit schools, communities and nature reserves in the areas surrounding Glenveagh. In keeping with climate action and goals to reduce emissions, the staff are hoping the car will help showcase how Ireland’s Parks are taking steps to adapt its vehicle fleet to meet the needs of the future. The green car is the second stage of this ambitious plan, following the successful launch of two electric buses in 2021.
The car highlights all new branding and identity for National Parks, which will emerge throughout this year with an all new national website, social media presence and raised profile as leaders in the protection of Irelands Biodiversity. The design for Glenveagh includes the red throated diver, one of the iconic bird species which gives the parks its protected status. The term ‘Protect Nature’ captures the main aim and purpose of the National Parks, but cleverly gives a call to action for us all to get to know and care for our natural heritage.
Glenveagh achieved its Green Flag Award in 2021 and part of that project was to improve engagement and connections with the local community. Along with climate adaption and mitigation, the Green Flag Plan places a greater emphasis on the importance of Education and Learning and the need to build better awareness of National Parks and Wildlife Service. This project is to be piloted in Donegal with a view to similar initiatives being rolled out in other regions in the future.
The background to the project came from ideas and feedback from local school children. Head of Education & Learning Clare Bromley explains:
Children were asked to make suggestions about the future of the park as part of their nature awareness trips with the Education Team. Many of them commented on the need for National Parks to set a good example for reducing emissions, and they drew pictures of what this could look like. The idea for the ‘little green car’ grew from there and it is brilliant to see our young people having their ideas taken on board. They are the future custodians of our National Parks, so we are committed to providing services and opportunities for them to learn about and feel connected to these special places.
For more information about the programme, the Education Centre can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org Pop up information and awareness events featuring the car and its team of Education Guides are planned throughout the year, both in the National park, local nature reserves and in the communities that surround them. Keep up to date with social media feeds for the latest news and at www.glenveaghnationalpark.ie