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UESD empowers students to develop innovative solutions to environmental challenges

UESD empowers students to develop innovative solutions to environmental challenges

The University of Environment and Sustainable Development (UESD) has made a momentous impact with its Community Challenge Awards, empowering students to develop innovative solutions to environmental challenges, and fostering a culture of sustainability and community engagement.

This is the third edition of the Community Development Challenge, following previous programmes held in 2022 for upper primary schools, 2023 for junior high schools, and 2024 for senior high schools.

The 2024 challenge, a debate competition, involved 14 senior high schools and consisted of preliminary, semi-final, and grand-final stages.

Donkorkrom Agric Senior High School emerged as the winner in the grand finals, while Ayirebi Senior High School took second place.

The Third Edition of the Community Development Challenge was held under the auspices of the Community Engagement Project and Innovations Unit (CEPIU) at Somanya, a flagship programme of the University.

The initiative aims to engage students from various educational levels in identifying and addressing community development challenges, with a focus on environmental protection, stewardship, and sustainable development.

It was on the topic: “Implementing strict regulations on corporations is the most effective way to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12: Responsible consumption and production, speak For or Against the motion.”

Mr Seth Kwame Acheampong, the Eastern Regional Minister, said the competition aimed to transcend winning or losing, instead it is focused on cultivating a deeper understanding of the collective responsibility towards the environment and the importance of sustainability in daily lives.

“SDG 12 challenges us to rethink our relationship with resources and consumption as well as urges government, businesses and individuals to embrace sustainable practices with urgency and commitment,” he said.

Professor Eric Nyarko-Sampson, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Environment and Sustainable Development, said to be on a sustainable path, we need to maintain our standard of living without depleting our natural resources or degrading the environment.

“It behoved us to encourage more sustainable consumption and production patterns through measures including specific policies and international agreements on the management of materials that are toxic to the environment,” he said.

He noted that products and materials must be designed in such a way that they could be reused, remanufactured, recycled or recovered.

The students, in their contribution, indicated that voluntary initiatives, corporate social responsibility, and industry collaborations could create a more sustainable and equitable future for all.

The Donkorkrom Agric Senior High School, which emerged as champion, took away a trophy, plaque, medals, stationery, cash, and certificate of participation.

While the Ayirebi Senior High School, the first runner-up, received a plaque, medals, and certificate of participation.

Some special awards went to the best debater, best eloquent speaker, best research team, and SDGs advocate.

The programme was supported by the Eastern Regional Coordinating Council and other partners to promote sustainable development initiatives in the region

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