A number of serious environmental problems are inherent in Pakistan, which are of great ecological concern in terms of its sustainable economic future. These include soil erosion, pesticide misuse, deforestation, desertification, urban pollution, waterlogging, salinity, freshwater pollution and marine water pollution, just to name a few. The major constraint to overcoming these problems, in-fact perhaps the main contributor to their intensity is alarming rate of population growth, which is very high in contrast to the natural limited resources that are available to the people. The most critical of all is the increasing sense of differentiation and disorientation among the citizens on ethnic, regional, sectarian and linguistic grounds.
Green Living Association (GLA) is a non-governmental, non-profit and not-for-funding (self relined) organization working to expand Environmental Education in Pakistan. GLA was formed in 2007 by internationally UN qualified and experienced Human Rights Pakistani activists with a spirit to develop Pakistani nation as a unified, responsible and environmental friendly citizens. GLA is part of Green Living initiatives worldwide and is partner of the Cleanup the World and United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP). The focus of Green Living Association is to provide practical and theoretical environmental education to the students and their families to develop among them the spirit to contribute their times and energies in making a unified and environment friendly Pakistani society.
The objective of developing a unified and environment friendly nation is not a simple one; it requires a research based road map to prescribe how we should proceed. In the specific Pakistani circumstances of differentiation and disorientation it requires fundamental changes in human attitudes and behaviour. Progress in this direction is thus critically dependent on focused education and public awareness. GLA is successfully making positive developments in the society under a focused, innovative and research based practical education plan for the schools’ students and their families. The unique environmental plan was established on the basis of the following findings:
- First, our society urgently requires new kind of education that can help prevent environmental degradation, and that should also foster caring and passionate mutual relations genuinely concerned with and capable of contributing to a harmonised and peaceful society.
- Second, these new kind of education must be available to all – not only a handful of people – and take place in various settings, including schools, families and communities.
- Third, it must begin in early childhood, as the values, attitudes, behaviours and skills acquired in this period may have a long-lasting impact in later life.
Thus, early childhood education continued to the higher grades and involvement of parents and families into it clearly has an important place in GLA’s efforts to bring about positive development in our society for a harmonized and environment friendly nation.