Dr. Yasmine Fouad, Minister of Environment, and Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, Head of the Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services; in the presence of a number of leaders from the ministry and organization; signed a cooperation protocol to strengthen cooperation and coordination between them to spread environmental awareness among individuals on all environmental issues, particularly climate change, at all levels of the Republic’s governorates.
Dr. Yasmine Fouad confirmed that the protocol falls within the framework of the ministry’s desire to enhance and support the role of civil society organizations in confronting the effects of climate change, preserving natural resources, and improving the environmental behaviors of society, by spreading environmental awareness among individuals and institutions, noting that the positive daily habits that we carry out as individuals have a positive impact on our ability to face the negative effects of climate change stressing that all heavenly religions have urged the preservation of God’s gifts on earth, including plants, animals, and wild creatures, and the need to teach this to our children; hence, the cooperation with the organization to raise awareness and increase youth participation to change negative habits for a decent life for us and future generations.
The Minister of the Environment stated that the recently launched National Climate Dialogue aims to increase the participation of diverse groups, including youth, politicians, religious men, women, and members of civil society, in addressing the challenge of climate change. and actual interventions to counter climate change’s effects. In accordance with the directives of the political leadership to implement effective activities and interventions to combat the effects of climate change, the Minister of the Environment encouraged everyone to participate in the forthcoming COP27 climate conference.
Dr. Fouad explained that cooperation between the two parties is carried out through the implementation of environmental awareness campaigns, the implementation of local initiatives that support the capabilities of citizens most affected by climate change damage and adaptation, and the implementation of educational activities and visual and audio environmental awareness materials as well as cooperation in raising Environmental awareness of citizens and the preservation of natural resources and ecosystems in the organization’s work areas through activities included in the organization’s plan, and the implementation of celebrations of environmental events throughout the year as well as environmental competitions with children and youth, in addition to working on empowering local communities and building resilience, resilience, and adaptability t Mitigating the negative effects of climate change within the work communities of the organization.
On his part, Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki praised the great role played by the Minister of Environment and the work team, since assuming the responsibility of the leadership of the Ministry of Environment and her insistence on leading change and development in the environmental sector in Egypt, starting with the issuance of the waste management law and the development and implementation of a national strategy for waste management; Issuing the first green government bonds, incorporating environmental sustainability into national investment plans, and supporting the construction of waste management infrastructure until the launch of Egypt’s National Climate Change Strategy 2050 last May.
Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki continued by stating that the signing of the protocol confirms President Abdel Fattah Al- Sisi’s declaration that 2022 will be the year of civil society organizations, thereby presenting a model for coordination and cooperation between state institutions and civil society organizations in the field of sustainable development. And to provide additional support for the implementation of the “Get Green” presidential initiative’s activities.
And Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki also indicated that cooperation is taking place with research agencies, experts, and specialists in developing agricultural development programs and the environment to implement a set of development interventions to meet the challenges arising from climate change, including building awareness, and empowering small farmers to be able to confront and adapt to climate crises while providing a comprehensive package of services. Training agricultural extension workers to be enlightened leaders on climate change issues, as well as encouraging the participation of women and young people in development work.
In accordance with the protocol, the Ministry of Environment provides technical support and environmental legislation governing environmental work in Egypt by the Ministry’s experts in all environmental fields, implements training programs for cadres and leaders in local communities to prepare trainers and lecturers in the field of environmental issues, and supports the Coptic Evangelical Organization with the Ministry’s awareness publications , supporting it with all information, messages, photos and films related to natural reserves and biodiversity , and working on the organization’s participation in technical programs related to waste recycling and mechanisms to increase its environmental and economic value, and facilitating the participation of representatives of the Coptic Evangelical Organization in the activities of the 27th Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which Egypt will be hosting in November 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh.