Mission and Aims of the Hungarian Society for Environmental Education (HSEE)
- To enhance the knowledge as well as the environmental consciousness and responsibility, and to develop an environmental-friendly way of thinking and way of life of those devoted to environmental education, and through them, of the Hungarian society as a whole;
- To disseminate information and methods needed for effective environmental education, to help the work of environmental educators, and to encourage and assist cooperation;
- To enhance the effectiveness of environmental educators;
- To understand and improve human relations in order to achieve a more harmonious coexistence with each other and with the environment;
- To develop and maintain an ethics based on respect both for nature and for humans, and to strengthen awareness globally and spanning over centuries ahead; and
- To develop competencies needed for a sustainable way of life.
History of our Society
- HSEE was founded by 53 enthusiastic environmental educators in March 1992.
- Today our Society has close to 200 members.
- In 1998, HSEE was acknowledged as a public interest organization in Hungary. In 1999, it received the “For Our Environment” award from the then Hungarian Minister of Environment.
- Presidents of HSEE since its foundation: Tamás Vásárhelyi, András Victor, Ibolya Németh, Ágnes Schróth, Ferenc Kecskés, and Erika Saly
- The majority of our members are educators (from kindergarten teachers to higher education faculty members); however, our membership also includes engineers, physicians, museum scientists, secondary school students, and many others with different backgrounds.
- Membership spans a broad range of age; from secondary school students to pensioners.
- Two-thirds of our members live outside the capital.
- Our members have formed local groups as well as working groups dedicated to certain environmental education fields.
Fields of Activities
- Theoretical, practical and methodological issues of environmental education (EE) and that of sustainability
- Maintaining and updating the actual editions of the National Environmental Education Strategy
- Helping to improve the methodological culture of educators; developing and adopting methodological standards
- Complex ways of organizing learning; interactive methods in EE
- EE in the family
- Literature on EE
- EE in the museum
- Enhancing the competence of teachers of any subject in environmental issues
- Schools and local sustainability
- Cooperation with civil organisations (NGOs) in environmental issues
- EE programs and modules
- Supporting schools on the road towards sustainability
- Trainings for educators
- Developing Thematic Wandering Science Toolkits, which are fun science toolkits – designed for non-professionals, mainly but not exclusively for children – containing games and activities in different topics (e.g., pollinators, climate, and the life and achievements of Ottó Herman); Offering EE programs at cultural festivals and events (Valley of Arts, Music in the Forest)
- Participation in projects (in HSEE projects and as partners in consortiums);
- Cooperation with other professional civil organisations (NGOs), for example in education for global responsibility
- „Puli” online salon for strengthening and maintaining communication and networking among our members
Major Achievements of Our Society
- ÖKO7 in Békásmegyer (continuous)
- „Állítsuk fel a gyerekeket a gép mellől!” (Let’s Get Kids Moving from Computer!) Developing an application for assessing how natural a certain habitat is. (2021-2022)
- University workshops based on the National Environmental Education Strategy (2019-2020)
- National Environmental Education Conference (2019)
- „Ökosodj!” (Get Eco-Smart!) training (continuous)
- „Otthon, város, Ferencváros” (Home, City, Ferencváros) – Joint climate strategy development and consortium partnership in climate protection projects with Ferencváros district of Budapest (2017-2022)
- Developing the Ottó Herman Thematic Wandering Science Toolkit (2016-2017), and later developing other Thematic Wandering Science Toolkits (fun science toolkits); presenting these toolkits at different events (continuous)
- „Természetfürkészet” (Observing Nature) on the Tétényi Plateau (2015-2019)
- „Otthon az erdőben” (Feeling at Home in the Forest) – a project sponsored by IKEA (2011-2016)
- Developing the “ZölDÖK” (Green Student Government) network (2013-2014)
- „Helyi a nyerő, helyiben az erő” (Local Wins, Local Strengthens) – a series of programs to strengthen local awareness and approach (2013-2014)
- LENA (Tanulás a természetben) – Ökovasút és Erdő élménye (LENA /Learning in Nature – Eco-railway and Experiencing Forests) programs (2012-2014)
- „Utak a fenntarthatósághoz; a megelőzés tanulása” (Roads to Sustainability; Learning for Prevention) – National Environmental Education Conference (2012)
- Carbon Detectives (2012)
- Real World Learning Network Project (2011-2015)
- Green Sweden Project – designing an eco-playground and drafting an EE brochure (2011)
- Greening ELTE (Eötvös Loránd University) – campaign to enhance sustainability awareness (2011)
- Beagle – biodiversity program (2010)
- Support (2010) – Decreasing our carbon footprint on our way to and from the school; Cooperation and Education for Sustainable Development (publication)
- Puli Camps – EE camps for children & teachers to be
- Programs at events marking notable environmental days (e.g., in the Zoo, at corporate and family events, etc.)
- Environmental Awareness – Education for Environmental Conscious Behavior; training for teachers and decision makers in sub-region municipalities (2010)
- Valley of Arts (yearly cultural festival in Hungary) – Programs and presentations at its “Green Corner” (2009)
- National Environmental Education Strategy – conferences and publications (1998, 2001, 2003, 2010, 2019-)
- Human Relations in Environmental Education – series of trainings
- Environmental Education for Grandparents (2003, 2004)
- The Role of Schools in Protecting Local Sustainability – conference and publication (2002)
- Greening of Schools – conference and blueprint (2002)
- Museums and Environmental Education – conference and publication
- Adaptation of EE-TIPs, an American education methodology package – training and publications (1998)
- Interactive Methods in Environmental Education (training, 1996)
- Environmental Education in the Family (discussion, 1995)
- Literature of Environmental Education (conference, 1994)
Open Programs – not only for members
- HSEE yearly meetings every autumn at different points of the country where we discuss HSEE matters, network, get acquainted with the venue and its environment, and share methods and experience
- ECO-Christmas program for children and their families at the beginning of December with the aim of making presents from natural materials and of wastes
- Puli Camp: A weak long nature camp for 6-14-year-old students, as well as for their adult instructors, future social volunteers, and for students in teacher training
- Ecological evenings for HSEE members and others interested: onsite and online discussions with invited lecturers on actual and interesting issues of sustainability
- Urban walks lead by experts to explore natural and built environmental values of certain districts or regions
- Exchange of methodology ideas: Reviewing professional and methodological ideas for certain projects and/or topics with exploring the possibility of adaptation; experience-based learning
- Programs and activities for children
- Counseling, consulting, lectures, presentations, and demonstrations
Communication & News
We publish news and articles about our activities on our website as well as share them with our members via a mailing list.
Our quarterly newsletter – “Kör” (Circle) – provides information about the life of our Society and highlights news in environmental education. It is published on our website and disseminated to our members mainly electronically.
In our blog “Basket of Methods” (Módszerkosár – in Hungarian) we share ideas and best practices.
Our Society also maintains a Facebook group.
Honorary Members of our Society
Attenborough, David; Cornell, Joseph; Goodall, Jane; György Lajos †; Havas Péter; Káldy József; Kontra György †; László Ervin; Legány András; Meskó Attila †; Országh Mihály †; R. Várkonyi Ágnes †; Schmidt Egon; Sólyom László; Vida Gábor
Leaders of our Society (2022-)
President: Erika Saly
Members of the Presidency: Erika Saly, Dóra Bátyi-Földesi, Éva Gyalog, Mária Ivánné Vidra, Csilla Tóthné Timár-Geng
Members of the Board: Balázs Devescovi, Oszkárné Hársas, Zsuzsa Iván, Ferenc Kecskés, Lászlóné Kun, Andrea Nagy, Zsuzsa Schenkerik, Marianne Szentpétery, Emília Sztrida, Angéla Trescsik, Attila Varga, Tamás Vásárhelyi, András Victor
Members of the Supervisory Committee: Edit Bárd, Zsolt Gilly, Ágnes Trencséni
Co-worker: Krisztina Sztridáné Kurucz (Office Manager)
Office: 59-61 Etele út, H-1119 Budapest
Tel.: +36 1 321 4796, Mobil: +36 20 4949 469
Headquarters: 4 Váci Mihály tér, II./4., H-1031 Budapest
Bank account: 16200151-00270519