Environmental education pop-up space Šūna to open in Riga and offer free events

07 Jun 2024

On Thursday, 2 May, the first environmental education pop-up space Šūna opened its doors in Riga, where, for the next eight weeks, Rigans and the city visitors will have a chance to visit more than 30 free events devoted to sustainability, nature, and climate, informed Agita Baltbārde, Member of the Board at CleanR Grupa.   

Šūna is located on a square in K. Valdemāra Street between the Latvian Art Academy and the Latvian National Museum of Art. Further information on the events program is available at https://cleanrgrupa.lv/suna/.

Šūna is a CleanR Grupa gift to society on CleanR’s, the Group’s largest and Latvia’s leading waste management company, 80th anniversary.

“We may take care of society in different ways—by delivering high-quality services or taking care of sustainability in the broadest sense of the word.  I would say that sustainability is not an issue pursued by the European Union, ministries or municipalities alone, it is a responsibility of each of us, and each of us has a role to play. As a market leader, we feel responsible for environmental education, and Šūna is a manifestation of that contribution,” stated Guntars Kokorevičs, Chairman of the Council of CleanR Grupa, at the opening.

He also expressed a belief that Šūna will function as a bridge between the environmental specialists and society, facilitating meetings, discussions, and exchange of opinions, thus promoting environmental awareness and willingness to act.

During the eight weeks, Šūna will host climate change researchers, artists, activists, and others who care for our planet’s future to hold discussions, provide inspiration, and look for solutions to our planet’s most urgent challenges.  Each week will be devoted to one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, offering the Šūna visitors exciting activities, lectures, discussions, and creative workshops.

“We believe that the debate on sustainability must be wide and diverse. Therefore, Šūna is not a museum or an exhibition; it is rather a set of events which, over the course of eight weeks, will reveal eight different themes in different ways—through a multimedia performance, workshops, discussions, exhibitions, and games. Our aim is to integrate the talk on the environmental issues into the mainstream and encourage everyone to rethink their role in pursuing environmental sustainability,” emphasizes Baltbārde.

At the opening event, everyone had a chance to acquaint themselves with the Šūna eight-week program while immersing in the Gints Gabrāns “Mountain of Fungas” exhibition, enjoying the world generated by a network of artificial neurons where mountains alternate with valleys, rivers wind through forest in an unusual and exciting way. The digital exhibition will be on display until 10 May.

“The climate change and environmental degradation themes are increasingly entering into the mainstream, yet it is not always enough to be aware of them.   Not only do we need to find solutions, but we also need to implement them—for example, by changing our habits. Changing habits is hard, it requires motivation, therefore we hope that the Šūna events will inspire and motivate people to act in favor of the environment and sustainability.  We call on everyone to take part in the Šūna events regardless of age, gender, profession, or education, as care for the environment implies both responsibility and opportunities for everyone,” says Ieva Kolosova, the Ambassador of the European Climate Pact to Latvia and the Šūna Project Manager.

The first week of Šūna is devoted to high quality environmental education. We call on everyone to take part in the Šūna events and get engaged in exciting activities which will help to understand the environmental challenges and how to act sustainably.

On 3 May from 5pm to 8pm, artist Iveta Trence will run a “Paper workshop”, where the participant will have a chance to learn creative ways on how to recycle paper and create unique objects.

On 4 May from 12pm to 4pm, we will celebrate our national holiday together with the “1836” team.

On 5 May from 12pm to 1.30pm, Agnese Vanaga, the author of “Plastic hooligans”, will run a creative workshop on creating your own “hooligans’ book”.  From 2pm to 4pm, families with children will have a chance to participate in an exciting environmental game letting them to learn more about environmental protection and a sustainable lifestyle.

More can be found on the Šūna homepage—https://cleanrgrupa.lv/suna/.

Until 28 May, on Mondays and Tuesdays, a multimedia show for youth aged 16 to 19 “I’m not a greenhead!” will be shown—a provocative story about the environment, climate, and the world around us. Seats are limited; therefore, we encourage teachers to apply on the Šūna homepage—https://cleanrgrupa.lv/suna/.

CleanR, CleanR Grupa’s largest company, started its operations in 1944 as the Riga City purification trust. Over the years, the company has changed its owners and name, and today it is a market leader in the waste management and circular economy areas.

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