The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Cagayan Valley was adjudged first runner-up in the 1st Gawad ACE BEN of the Department of Education (DepEd) that highlighted the 1st Regional Public Affairs, Communication and Information Congress held today.
The Gawad ACE BEN which stands for Agency Contribution for an Ennobling Basic Education towards Nation-building is a competition among regional line agencies and local government units in Region 2 showcasing their contributions in basic education.
DENR Regional Executive Director Gwendolyn Bambalan in her statement thanked the education department for its support to engage the youth sector in all environmental conservation efforts of the region.
“We would like to commend our active partners from the Department of Education under the leadership of Regional Director Benjamin Paragas for your invaluable contributions in molding the youth sector to become better citizens and stewards of the environment," she said.
The region's DENR top official also recognized the students as potential partners in environmental conservation and protection.
“I am elated that the DepEd supports our quest for behavior change towards the protection of the planet we live in,” she added.
As a contribution to basic education, the DENR Region 2 has donated a total of 209,487 board feet with an estimated value of P5,053,166 to different public schools since 2011. These forest products were used by the DepEd for construction and repair of public school buildings, and for manufacture of school desks, arm chairs, office fixtures and other school essentials.
Sec. 2.7 of Executive Order No. 23 issued in February 2011 specifically states that the education department shall be given priority in the use of all confiscated logs.
The DENR through its communication’s group has also spearheaded the conduct of several environmental education in schools to promote awareness on the urgent need to protect the environment and natural resources. This is pursuant to Republic Act 9512 or the Environmental Awareness and Education Act of 2008.
Director Bambalan reported that since the declaration of the public health emergency in 2020 where schools have shifted to other modes of teaching and learning, the Regional Strategic Communication and Initiatives Group has increased the agency’s social media presence to engage the youth in different environmental activities.
“Through the social media, students are encouraged to participate in different contests such as photography, vlog-making, dance, poster-making and environmental worksheets," she underscored.
Environmental youth camps and photo exhibits were also initiated.
The DENR has also provided students with coloring books, tumblers, eco-bags, umbrellas and paper fans to encourage them to support the department’s environmental advocacies.#