Middle East Training of Trainers (ToT) Workshop Highlights Flyway Approach to the Conservation and Wise Use of Waterbirds and Wetlands
Amman, Jordan, 17 August 2009 – The BirdLife International Middle East Secretariat in its capacity as the Regional Centre for the Wings Over Wetlands (WOW) Project in partnership with the Royal Society for the Protection of Nature (the BirdLife partner in Jordan) conducted the first regional “Training of Trainers” (ToT) course in “The Flyway Approach to the Conservation and Wise Use of Waterbirds and Wetlands” in Amman, Jordan on 10th – 16th August 2009.
The week-long WOW ToT course aimed to strengthen the capacity of regional trainers in the Middle East on the flyway conservation approach. At the workshop, a group of trainers from different countries in the region learned how to train others effectively and bring flyway conservation into the mainstream of their countries’ conservation planning. The Middle East serves as a major bridge for waterbird migration in the AEWA region.
A total of 15 participants from Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Oman, Yemen, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Palestinian Authority Territories, and Qatar participated in the workshop representing governmental organisations and Civil Society organizations led by BirdLife partners and network organisations in these countries. The ToT workshop was funded by the Middle East sub regional component of the Wings Over Wetlands (WOW) UNEP/GEF African-Eurasian Flyways Project and both Wetlands International and the AEWA Secretariat.
The programme of the ToT consisted of learning sessions from the new WOW Flyway Training Kit which address a wide range of issues relevant to flyway conservation, including 1. Understanding the Flyway Approach to Conservation, 2. Applying the Flyway Approach to Conservation, and 3. Communicating the Flyway Approach.
The ToT also provided trainers with a practical framework on how to hold national workshops on selected flyway conservation themes based on individual training and awareness-raising and outreach needs. A field trip was part of the course, where participants visited the Azraq wetland reserve as a case study. Participants were introduced to the site, one of the only permanent, natural wetlands in the Jordanian desert (ca. 100 km east of Amman) and learnt about its importance along the flyway and major conservation challenges to conserve the wetland were highlighted.
The Training of Trainers workshop has helped to establish the WOW Flyway Training Programme regionally and to build a pool of regional trainers capable of identifying major training needs within their countries. At the same time these trainers should now be capable of delivering national training and awareness raising events related to flyway conservation. The WOW Project Partners hope to see a number of national workshops being planned in different countries in the region as a result of the ToT in the near future.
For more information please contact: Sharif Jbour (Sharif.Jbour@birdlife.org)
• WOW Regional Centre: Middle East
• The Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature
• Middle Eastern Important Bird Areas