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15 June 2016

Time for Global Action - The Quest on Sustainable Development Goals in Melitopol

For the first time, the small town of Melitopol in the Zaporizhia region hosted a quest dedicated to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

The quest, named "Time for Global Action," was organized by teachers and students of the Melitopol Specialized School № 23. The quest offered the school an excellent opportunity to organize a large-scale event centered around its mission.

The quest had two admirable goals. First, it aimed to raise awareness about SDGs amongst school students and members of the community. Second, it was designed to prompt participants to search for the tools to face challenges and implement the SDGs in their local community.

In total, four schools participated in the quest. The participants were divided into five teams, each consisting of 4-6 participants of all ages and genders. Each team also had two coordinators - an assistant and a tutor. One coordinator was a teacher and one was a student of the organizing school № 23.

Each team moved according to a unique route developed by its tutor. For this reason, teams developed different specializations, such as the "International Language Group," the "Design Bureau," the "Natural Scientists," the "Theater Company," and the "Olympic Team." During the entirety of the quest, teams acted using the skills possessed by the professionals in their corresponding specialization. All teams had five challenges, each designed to familiarize participants with the Sustainable Development Goals. The challenges also prompted the teams to look for tools to solve problems and showed the participants that they actually possess the ability to improve the situation in their local communities. The practical result that the quest coordinators set out to achieve was a complete map of Ukraine with a list of tools to implement the 17 SDGs and corresponding 169 targets.

Understanding that children are on summer holidays, the quest organizers during the last two challenges organized tasks such as recognizing QR-codes and working with geo-objects, which are innovative technologies for education. Performing tasks using mobile devices, participants quickly found answers to questions and formulated ways to solve problems. The two and a half hours of the quest flashed by like a minute!

During the implementation of the quest, organizers effectively cooperated with employees of the city park where the event was held. Specially, they worked with the park’s director, Anatoliy Demyanenko, and the park organizer, Olha Zvereva. They also received effective assistance from employees of the child health clinic, pharmacies, shops, schools, and colleges.

At the end of the event, the teams received awards, certificates from the quest organizers, and gifts from city council member Roman Romanov.

The ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu once said:
"Work on the hard while it’s easy, And take care of the large while it’s small. The hard things in the universe necessarily arise from the easy matter, and the serious matters of the universe necessarily arise from the trivial." 
So start with yourselves!

Quest coordinator: Victoria Knyazeva, teacher of ICT at School № 23, Melitopol.

Tutors (responsible for challenges): Iryna Yeliseeva, Adil Seitosmanov, Victoria Knyazeva, Vlad Zavhorodniy, Oksana Struts, Veronika Shumakova, Olena Tyurina, Oleksandr Vecheria, Inna Pokusa, Viktoria Novikova.

Feedback from participants:
“Everything was cool. Our team came in first at the finish!”
Maria Trofimchuk, 8th grade student, School № 23

“Our future depends on us. Let's make it better! For us it is not a game, it is a reality! Each of us can do something effective to help! Our class will help protect the environment. We invite you to join us!”
Vlad Mischenko and Kateryna Shmatko, 7th grade students, School № 1

“The game, the race, the challenges, new knowledge, new friends, a new look at the problems that always seemed simple and not pressing. Topical, informative, impressive!”
Daniil Naumov, 7th grade student, Gymnasium № 10


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