In 2018 Lorna Pettifer Manager of Education and Training at CERES was awarded the inaugural Environmental & Sustainability Educator of the Year by Environment Education Victoria.
Award Winners – Lorna Pettifer, Environmental & Sustainability Educator of the Year, and Karen Jones, Excellence Award
What makes you jump out of bed in the morning and be an environmental and sustainability educator?
Having a career that links to your core values makes you jump out bed even on the rainiest, cold and overwhelming mornings. Living your passions is a must for your own wellbeing and for the quality of programs you create and make happen. At CERES I have the space to design, test and play with new ideas as well as watch programs grow, evolve and see and measure their impacts. What makes your day is when an individual and group share their story after the program has finished and you are able to see the outcomes of the programs we deliver.
What have you done in Environmental Education in 2018 to be recognised by the sector?
I am lucky to work for CERES, an organisation that supports so many programs and engages a diversity of people of all ages in environmental education. I oversee our school programs, adult education and global programs. We have a collective reach of 326,621 students, teachers, parents and participants per year (FY18 numbers). We have over 80 educators and trainers that make magic happen through delivering learning experiences in topics such as water, waste, energy, biodiversity, food, cultural awareness, sustainable living and permaculture.
As well as managing and overseeing programs, here are some of the activities and programs I have been part of 2018:
- Bringing Paul Hawken, Editor of Drawdown, 100 Solutions to reversing Global Warming, to Moreland in partnership with MCC and MEFL to create community conservations about climate change
- Delivery of the Environmental Education Course that enables and inspires others to educate groups and feel confident to inspire change
- Delivering of Behaviour Change presentations, keynotes and webinars
- Ongoing development of our CERES Education Model for Change and how to create an effective narrative for change
- Behaviour Change Rep. for CERES Environmental Management Team
- Creating professional development opportunities for our educators and staff.
- Fostering partnerships for program development, projects funding, sharing resources and collaboration
- Procuring our 3rd year of funding for our Alternative Pathways in Sustainability Program (Inner North Community Foundation)
- Supporting our Education and Training Leadership team
- Encouraging better collaboration within and between staff groups and projects.
What would inspiration can you give to students and teachers that are educating their peers or class on how to be more sustainable and have a lighter environmental impact?
Here is a handful of tips and tricks I recommend for current and budding environmental educators and avengers:
- Learn from what has worked before, the bright spots, someone that has done it in a similar situation
- Create a heart connection to a topic, campaign or change progress. This will create longer lasting change.
- Linking to a story or personal narrative forms a stronger link to your audience
- Autonomy is important when getting others on board. Make them part of it or make them think it is their idea!
- Make it fun, engaging and creative and think outside the box when you want to engage people in your idea or project
- Collaborate with others that are doing similar projects and make the change BIGGER and more impactful
- Empathize with the group that you want to get on board your change project
- Make the path doable and the goals reachable along the way to keep people on board
- Remember to celebrate and recharge yourself and your team so you have energy for the next planet saving campaign or program. Burn out does not save the planet!