LANDLIFE Boosting land stewardship as a conservation tool in the western Mediterranean arch: a communication and training scheme
In the period September 2011 – December 2014 the five LandLife project partners - Xarxa de Custòdia del Territori, Conservatoire d'espaces naturels du Languedoc-Roussillon, Legambiente Lombardia, Eurosite and Prysma - will promote the land stewardship principles and will develop practical tools so that you too can implement land stewardship in a natural area you care for. We hope to encourage landowners, citizens and others to become (more) involved in nature conservation, so that we can take care of Europe’s natural and cultural treasures together.
Our website www.landstewardship.eu is the project’s main portal of communication and it will become the most exhaustive source of information about land stewardship in Europe by 2014. Currently the second phase of the website is being developed in order to host the helpdesk and develop “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ), “your role” and “land stewardship” sections. The first questions received via the Help Desk email address have already been answered. Since October 2012 a LandLife newsletter keeps our subscribers and contacts informed about the project’s initiatives.
A separate but linked website (http://www.landlifeweek.eu) was established for the European Land Stewardship Week, which took place from 28 September to 7 October 2012. This website has received more than 45,000 visits since its creation. One of the campaign activities invited citizens to connect with nature through photography. More than 250 pictures from more than 10 countries were received. During the European Land Stewardship Week, 231 organisations and institutions from 22 countries held a total of 421 activities. Moreover, approximately 15,000 people took part in the different activities organised during this week. The initiative appeared in different media, such as different regional newspapers and TV programmes.
At the start of the project we carried out a comparative study of the development and implementation of land stewardship in the Mediterranean Arc and Europe based on responses to a European questionnaire and interviews in the three focus areas of the study (Mediterranean arch).
Xarxa de Custòdia del Territori, Conservatoire des Espaces Naturels du Languedoc-Roussillon and Legambiente Lombardia pay regular visits to local and regional actors in land stewardship, which on occasion result in new signed land stewardship agreements.
With the aim of extending LandLife’s outreach, we have created a database of Life projects related to land stewardship and biodiversity and have produced a study report on the results of LIFE projects considered relevant for land stewardship.
An Advisory Board and an expert team have written the European Manual “Caring together for nature - manual on land stewardship as a tool to promote social involvement with the natural environment in Europe”. The manual includes real case studies from different European countries.
On 22 and 23 April 2013 the first LandLife workshop took place in Montpellier, France. More information about this successful event will be published soon. The organisation of the land stewardship workshops in Italy and Spain (May 2013) is well underway. Dates and draft programmes have been published on the project website and dozens of delegates have already registered.
The project partners have promoted LandLife at Green Week and various fairs, events, workshops and conferences. Dissemination of project information has been reinforced via partners’ own websites and social networks. Communication materials produced include the tale "What's going on at the pond?" (available in English and Catalan) and a song for kids, the virtual map “share experiences” and a video statement of Stefan Leiner, Head of the Nature Unit of the European Commission’s DG Environment.