The Altea-Europa association, together with the Tunisian association “Comité Des Habitants d’El Mourouj 2”, have carried out in 2005/2006 an environmental education project, with financial support from the International Cooperation Department of the University of Alicante.

The southern suburbs of Tunis are overcrowded compared to the rest of the capital. A major part of the area is occupied by poor people and environmental issues are strongly raised and directly influence the citizens’ quality of life. These neighborhoods are situated around a large lake, “Sijoumi”, which covers an area of 30 Km2. The lake is frequented by migratory birds and is an essential component of Southern Tunisian Geography and especially of its ecological balance.

The 500,000 people living around the lake are involved unwillingly in the pollution of the natural environment and threaten its ecological balance. The wetland is being subjected to different types of pollution: liquid (sewage and industrial waste) and solid (garbage dumps). The situation has led to the deterioration of the quality of life in the whole area. To remedy the situation, an environmental education project, adapted to the Sijoumi wetland was launched, and orientated to professors, sociocultural animators, high school students and young active in environmental issues, who represent a basic ground for dissemination of environmental education.

In order to realize this Project, the Association Altea-Europa as promoter and the “Association des Habitants de El Mourouj” as counterpart, request a grant to the University of Alicante, in the framework of the aid granted for International Cooperation.

Location: Southern Districts surrounding Tunis (Capital).

Beneficiaries: Students from schools and high schools, educators, sociocultural animators. It also involves the entire population living around the wetland Sijoumi (approximately 500,000 people).

  • To raise public awareness of the protection of nature and the environment in order to improve the citizen’s quality of life.
  • To conduct training workshops for trainers, educators, sociocultural animators and students.
  • To conduct a needs analysis in order to implement an ecological observatory “Nature Interpretation Center”.
Short-term impact:
  • Public awareness on environmental protection: conservation and wise use of wetlands.
  • Awareness of the authorities by establishing guidelines chaired by the criterion of sustainability.
Mid-term and long term Impact:
  • Improved quality of life for the inhabitants of the southern districts.
  • Restored ecological balance in the region of Sijoumi.
  • Sustainable development of the neighborhoods bordering the city of Tunis.

Training Materials:
  • Teaching materials: edition of guide consisting in 6 notebooks and teaching materials (cards, dice, CD Rom), in Arabic and French version, which have been distributed to the training participants.
  • Acquisition of training materials: A laptop and a projector were purchased.
A core group for the implementation of the program was constituted. An application form was distributed in the establishments involved, and a selection of key persons was made. The target group consists of:
  • 34 care givers.
  • 321 teachers (masters, professors).
  • 301 journalist.
  • 333 high school students.
Development of training workshops:
A total of six training workshops have been conducted in the classroom and fieldwork, according to the different activities foreseen in the training notebook:
  • General ecology (cohabitate and survive)
  • Birds of Sijoumi (the domain of flamenco)
  • The flora and pollution in Sijoumi (Is a green Sijoumi possible?)
  • Food chains (nothing is lost everything is transformed)
  • The water cycle (water and salt)
  • Stop Sijoumi’s ecosystem degradation (What is the future of Sijoumi?)

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