Eco Friends of Rila Mountain

The project "Eco Friends of Rila Mountain", implemented by a youth initiative group at the Foundation "Values, Virtues, Integrity" with the financial support of the European Solidarity Corps, aimed to channel the energy of youth to promote the concept of ecology, prosperity and health through physical activity. In the summer of 2021, the youth initiative group regularly organized volunteer activities for cleaning polluted areas in the municipality of Samokov.

The specific objectives of the project were:

- to generate public awareness of the possible links between physical activities in nature and environmental protection;

- to promote environmental awareness among the citizens of the town of Samokov, while practicing physical exercises in nature such as tourism;

- to increase the recognition of the natural value among the town’s population, which would have a direct contribution to nature protection;

- to stimulate the social inclusion of people with fewer opportunities through regular tourist events;

- to promote volunteering through active campaigns in schools and the media.

Within the framework of the project, information campaigns were organized among the students at the Cyril and Methodius Primary School and the Otets Paisiy Primary School in Samokov, mountain hikes in Rila and actions for cleaning polluted natural areas. Dozens of volunteers from the town of Samokov, as well as from other settlements and even from abroad, joined the project. The foundation aims at sustainability of results and intends to continue the initiative in the coming years.

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