As we approach World Environment Day, it’s a good time to reflect on the value of partnerships. World Environment Day is about advocating partnerships and creating positive environmental change, and so are we.
20 years ago I was a young guy with passion for the environment and a good idea to turn this passion into action. 20 years on, I’m not as young but I still have the passion and now have a solid understanding of what turns a good idea into reality.
It’s through the relationships we build with like-minded people and organisations that we create positive change.
The Clean Up the World campaign is held in conjunction with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). They helped the campaign get started in 1993, and have stood shoulder to shoulder with us ever since.
From our beginnings in Sydney, Australia, Clean Up the World is now in over 120 countries around the world. An estimated 35 million people volunteer their time, energy and enthusiasm for a better environment each year.
We still partner with UNEP on a global level but equally as important are the alliances we’ve formed with our participants at a local level. Through being part of Clean Up the World, participants have joined a global network who work to protect the environment for current and future generations. For this, I thank them.
This World Environment Day, we’ll officially be launching our Clean Up the World Activity Report which summaries the achievements of the campaign and its participants in 2009.
In the report, we also recognise the importance of partners in achieving our mission to clean up, fix up and conserve the environment. It is with the support of our 2009 partners – UNEP, Brambles, Qantas, the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Armor and Marriott International, Inc. – that we can provide the best information and resources for our participants to carry out environmental activities across the globe. Our partners also work to promote awareness by spreading the Clean Up message amongst their networks, contributing to the growth of the campaign each year.
As I read the report, I am newly inspired. Together, what a difference we have made. Across 124 countries, communities planted trees, cleaned up villages, overhauled entire countries, launched recycling and energy conservation programmes and ran awareness raising activities.
In the end the planet will be saved by the actions we take as organisations and as individuals. I encourage you to read the report to see what our partner organisations and participants did for the planet last year.
2010 is shaping up to be bigger and better. As the campaign is entering its eighteen year, we are again looking forward to working with our worldwide network of participants and volunteers to build on the success of 2009 and past years.
At Clean Up the World this year we’re supporting the UN’s 2010 International Year of Biodiversity and are calling for communities to care for nature this Clean Up the World Weekend (17 – 19 September). We hope our report inspires you to get involved. By participating, you’ll inspire others to take action so wherever in the world you are, join us to protect and promote biodiversity in your community.
Clean Up the World demonstrates that the best environmental results come through building strong partnership. I’d like to thank all our partners and participants – the positive contribution you have made to the environment is something we can all be proud of.
Ian Kiernan AO