Danube Day 2006 was a special Danube Day – it did not only celebrate the Danube Rivers, but also saw the launch of the Danube Box. This innovative education kit for teachers was developed over 16 months and since 2006, it was also translated into various national versions. The Danube Box is a “teaching kit” that give local schoolchildren a greater understanding of the river, the threats posed to the river, and the need to preserve water resources.
Speaking about the Danube Box, Philip Weller, Executive Secretary of the ICPDR, said, “The ‘Danube Box’ answers a need to effectively communicate information and appreciation to the younger generation on the importance of the Danube river and its tributaries as part of our natural heritage.”
The Danube Box is the outcome of the “Green Danube Partnership” between The Coca-Cola Company, Coca-Cola HBC and the ICPDR, which was established in June 2005. The “Green Danube Partnership” is a private/public initiative to demonstrate business responsibility for the future of the Danube. Sir Michael Llewellyn-Smith, board director Coca-Cola HBC: "We take our corporate social responsibilities very seriously indeed, and we have significant operations along the Danube River which contribute to water conservation and to a wider understanding of the concept of sustainable development.”
National versions of Danube Box & related projects
The Danube Box is already in use in Austria, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania, national versions are being planned for other countries. It is hoped that the Danube Box will also be adopted for spin-off projects. Since the launch in 2006, this has already happened several times - with the Saar Box in Germany, the Black Sea Box or the Orange River Box in Southern Africa.
Changes in corporate practice are essential to achieve progress in meeting the obligations and activities under the Danube River Protection Convention. The cooperation with the business and industry sectors is important for the long-term success towards achieving sustainable water management.
ICPDR Danube Watch: The Danube goes to school