Ukrainian children discovered Estonian nature and went berry picking for the first time 23.09

There are 25,000 Ukrainian children and young people who have escaped to Estonia from the war. To help them settle in, the Environmental Investment Centre (KIK) organised nature trips all around Estonia. Over a hundred people took part in these trips. In cooperation with RMK, KIK will organise more nature trips in autumn for Ukrainian schools and study groups.

“During the summer trips, we saw that many Ukrainian refugees are interested in Estonian nature and its conservation,” says Anni Raie, the project manager of the nature trips. “We received a lot of positive feedback on our nature trips. Best of all, the trips sparked an interest among Ukrainian refugees and encouraged them to explore nature trails in Estonia. Ukrainians are especially fascinated by our bogs as they don’t have any in their country.”

“RMK provides information about hiking opportunities in Ukrainian so that refugees would feel more at home in Estonia and they would have more opportunities to discover Estonia and its nature,” says Kristjan Tõnisson, Member of RMK Management Board.

Valgesoo study trail

The goal of these trips is to introduce Estonian nature and its conservation to Ukrainian children and young people and help them acquire basic environment-related vocabulary according to language immersion principles. So far, the feedback has been very positive and people are interested in taking more nature trips. As there are many Ukrainian children and young people who used to live in cities, most of them hadn’t gone hiking in nature until now. It was their first time hiking in a forest, discovering nature and eating wild berries.

We plan to organise more trips in autumn for Ukrainian schools and study groups in cooperation with RMK who will offer a special programme at the Aegviidu and Viimsi visitor centres in Ukrainian and Russian. In cooperation with RMK and private partners, KIK and the Ministry of the Environment will carry out the project to introduce Estonian nature as well as encourage language acquisition through an inclusive programme.

If you wish to find out more or make a partnership proposal, contact:
Anni Raie
+372 5909 4144