On 16-17 August 2012, CIFAL Jeju hosted its first training to bring to South Korea The Green Dreams Around the World Campaign, which represents the voice of the "My Green Dream" project. The Campaign aims to activate youth worldwide to collect citizens' feedback by training them to be ‘dream-catchers’ and map the priorities of urban citizens into 14 categories. ‘Dreams’ lasting up to 1 minute are recorded using cameras or smart phones and uploaded on a YouTube Channel and website. These dreams are then presented in ranked form to local decision makers encouraging them to take action for more local green growth.

Launched at the 2011 International Conference of Innovative Cities (ICIC) in Curitiba, Brazil, by CIFAL Curitiba (UNITAR training centre for local development learning in South America), the campaign has now spread to the United Kingdom, the United States, across Brazil, and now Asia.

The first Asia-based two-day training brought a select group of 50 University students and 6 High School students to participate in what has also been a preparatory event for the World Conservation Congress (WCC) in Jeju that will take place from September 6-15, where the campaign will finally go live.

CIFAL Jeju and Korea’s first Green Dreams training of ‘dream-catchers’ was held at Jeju Stone Park. Jeju Stone Park is an ecological and cultural park that displays the history of stone culture pivotal to the history and culture of Jeju Island, and is located in the northern part of the island.

The “Youth Workshop for Conservation of Nature: Green Dreams Campaign” commenced with welcome remarks by CIFAL Jeju’s Director Ambassador Chung, followed by a keynote speech from the Secretary-General of WCC Organizing Committee Kim Chong Chun and continued for two days with lectures, role-playing exercises and hands-on activities to learn the basics of the Green Dreams Campaign and how to become a ‘dream-catcher’. Lectures were held on different topics of green growth and youth involvement in greening our local cities, including one on “Climate Change and Green Lifestyles” by Prof. Jeong Dai-yeon of Jeju National University, who is also the Director of the Sustainable Environmental Education Center of Jeju Special Self-Governing Province.

TalkConcertDuring the first training day, the audience of young students participated in a ‘Talk Concert’: Dreams of Youth and Nature. During this session CIFAL Jeju's Director, Amb. Chung, and Mr. Baek Woon-Chul, the creator of Jeju Stone Park delivered an interactive debate on their own personal “Green Dreams” for Korea and the importance of nature and biodiversity, while fielding questions from the participants.

In the evening, participants discussed in groups the role of youth in the conservation of biodiversity in times of increasing urbanization. Participants also began practicing the act of  ‘catching dreams’ by video-recording their own green dreams, which are now uploaded on the Green Dreams Youtube Channel with English subtitles. To view the entire collection of dreams, see: http://green-dream.co.uk/dreams/   

With this first Training, ‘dream-catchers’ can now officially go out and engage local citizens around Korea to collect, document, map and share local citizens' priorities or "green dreams" and upload these onto the Green Dreams Website.

Participants also learned about the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development and how the Green Dreams Campaign also premiered at that important event, as part of the UN Future We Want social media campaign, with a live exhibition of selected Green Dreams for all to see at the Rio+20 Conference premises RioCentro. Since Rio+20 in June 2012, the Campaign has continued to gain ground spreading across countries with current dreams now collected from places as far as Switzerland, India and now Korea too!

For more information on CIFAL Jeju’s upcoming training programmes on related themes of green growth and biodiversity for local governments in Asia, and to learn how to participate, see the online UNITAR Training Catalogue at: www.unitar.org/event

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