Young People in Protected Areas

Junior Rangers at Lake Pfaeffikon©Yannick Bucher

Involving the future leaders

Young people make up nearly 20% of Europe’s population. They are the decision-makers of tomorrow. It is important they are given the opportunity to consider how the present management of our environment will affect them, so they can express their thoughts, opinions and get involved in the issues that will eventually impact them.

Yet today’s young people lead busy lives. School, for teenagers is all consuming and the social pressures and constraints are enormous. Trying to get young people interested in the environment can be difficult as it involves changing perceptions and attitudes, something that requires a lot of time and effort.

Young people are the future of Protected Areas in Europe.

Being on the crowded continent of Europe, the need to develop a sense of connectivity of shared natural resources is imperative. Developing a mutual understanding and improved ability to cooperate and collaborate with differing cultures is inherent in the work of the EUROPARC Federation. We believe that international cooperation is fundamental to manage our European natural heritage.

Making sure young people have a role in that, has been an important component of our work. Young people can make a great contribution to their local community when encouraged to participate in nature orientated events.

By bringing young people and Rangers together, we want to enable young people to respect and care for their local Protected Area, whilst also learning the valuable role Rangers play in the conservation of nature.

We encourage all EUROPARC members to develop and deliver programmes for young people in their community.

Consider to also share your story by submitting a case study to our Knowledge Hub!

Visit the following pages to read more about the EUROPARC youth programmes: