The Mediterranean Forest, the Fire and You
The Mediterranean Forest, Fire “y Tú” (and you), MeFiTu, is the environmental awareness project on the ecology of forest fires aimed at primary and secondary school students with the objective of educating, communicating and raising awareness among students, schools and society in general.
This project works to reorient the social perception of fire, learning to live with it as another ecological factor, from prevention to self-protection, not only understanding it as a factor of destruction for our forests.
Fires have shaped our landscape and our biodiversity. But for the last 50 years, a zero-tolerance fire management model has been adopted. This program intends for students to learn about the most important factors that cause them and reflect on the possible solutions that citizens can carry out as active agents.
The Mefitu workshop wants the students to learn through experience:
- Zero risk does not exist, we must learn to live with fire.
- Fire is part of the Mediterranean climate, it will continue to exist and will even increase ⎯due to climate change.
- The management model must invest in prevention (sustainable forest management), and in self-protection.
This learning is carried out through activities whose protagonists are the students and the fire:
Where the project’s mascot, Mefitu the wolf, is introduced and guides students through the history of fire, from its discovery to its role in the evolution of humanity by being able to control it. Everyday situations where fire intervenes in a controlled manner are also explained. Finally, uncontrolled fire is presented in the form of forest fires: what causes them, how their effect can be minimized and how to improve the vulnerability of our forests.
In which trees are created with recycled paper. From these trees, two scenarios are prepared: one simulates an unmanaged forest, with a high number of cardboard trees and shrubs, and the other simulates a managed forest, with less load and less continuity of trees.
A story with controlled burning of mockups
Through the story told by the characters of a town, the forest structure is related to fire behavior and the capacity of extinction. This storytelling works with the concept of forest management and the results derived from direct observation of the effects of fire on the mockups
A forest area is visited (if possible, it has suffered a wildfire). Artistic activities to discover the environment are carried out, inviting students to reflect on what they have learned in classroom.
All these activities take place in the educational center, except for the field trip, which will be chosen based on the area where the school is located and will be adapted for each audience and place in the most opportune way.
We have already visited more than 50 schools: