Viridis Loci Academy
The Viridis Loci project aims at providing specialized VET training/transfer of skills in the correct management of green areas and parks in municipalities to public technicians and private subjects who are interested in dealing with an advanced professional management of urban nature (with special regards to those impacted by pandemic) and to graduates in three European islands: Sardinia, the Balearics and Madeira. The partnership will actively cooperate to reach this aim, and it is composed by public bodies, SMEs, and an international VET provider (ABA international). The contribution of ABA International will be essential to provide the ICT e-learning platform and transfer knowledge to make the best use of ICT tools; Fitoconsult will provide the contents for the realization of the outputs while ATM will provide contents for the preparation of outputs and will coordinate the methods of knowledge transfer. ABA International will also implement the training internationally and will share it among the 29 countries that are part of its network. Implementation will also be assured by the associated partners. The consortium presented this project for three main reasons:
1) Environmental sustainability and the fight against climate change: it emphasizes the role of wellmanaged green areas/parks within cities and municipalities in general as providers of ecosystem services (benefits that people obtain from nature, e.g.,, climate regulation, CO2 capture, air quality improvement, cultural values, public health and biodiversity conservation).
2) Increase Inclusion: The training will address the need for updating to bridge the knowledge gap of those who operate in the public and private sectors or who intend to enter this job market. The project will operate in three island contexts in southern Europe, which due to their geography, tend to be isolated and at a permanent economic disadvantage compared to other regions of the continent. Islands tend to lag behind in economic terms and innovation processes negatively impact the communities residing on the islands. Unemployment rates in the three islands are high with dramatic peaks among young people and in all cases higher than the respective national averages: Sardinia (18% - youth unemployment around 45%), Balearic Islands (youth unemployment 17% - around 40%) and Madeira (10% - 50.5% youth unemployment).
3) Overcoming the knowledge gap with the use of ICT technologies to impart a highly technological and innovative working methodology. The project will be innovative, both for the contents and for the methods of conducting the courses (high-tech maintenance methods) and for the methods of carrying out the activities (use of the ICT platform for e-learning and as an innovation storage device) . The platform developed by ABA International will be used as a cutting-edge technology for e-learning at a distance and will alternate with practical workshops, will collect all the teaching material and will also constitute a repository of ideas, exchange of best practices as well as maintaining all deliverables. of the project.
Evaluation and Implementation of Chainsaw Operators Certification (EAIOCOC)
The need for a recognised INTERNATIONAL/EUROPEAN CHAINSAW CERTIFICATE (ICC/ECC) or 'licence' has been proposed and discussed by various organisations and individuals at meetings over a number of years which ultimately led to the successful development of the international Awarding Body Association (ABA). ABA International is a 'not for profit' organisation primarily tasked with the management and quality assurance of education and provision of skills certification and recognition throughout Europe and Worldwide. By February 2014 over 300 successful International/European Chainsaw Certificates have been issued and recorded in the innovative electronic skills register of chainsaw operators.
The idea and starting point for an International/European chainsaw certification can actually be traced back to an international UK supported Forestry Training (Chainsaw Standards) project in Canada undertaken by William Robb during 1995 - https://www.churchillfellowship.org/ideas-experts/fellows-directory/william-robb and further meetings held between Instructors/Assessors & Advisors from the UK National School of Forestry - Newton Rigg, Danish School of Forestry - Skovskolen & the Scottish School of Forestry, in the UK during 1997 as part of an EU funded project led by Ib Christensen (Skovskolen National Forestry Centre - University of Copenhagen). Follow up European chainsaw workshops and meetings took place involving Ib Christensen and William Robb (Lecturer in UK National School of Forestry - Newton Rigg) and their training colleagues since 2000 including participation in various other European discussions. During this period William Robb was already developing and field testing the first draft versions of European chainsaw standards (ECS) in the UK.
Following the recommendation of the UK Leonardo National Agency, William Robb developed and submitted a European chainsaw project proposal, which was successfully approved in 2009. He subsequently managed the 'Evaluation and Implementation of Chainsaw Operators Certification' project through to completion in 2011. He is the technical author and owner of the pioneering European (ECS/ECC) and International chainsaw certification standards (ICS/ICC).
Development of European occupational training & assessment standards for registered Independent LOLER inspectors in the workplace (LOLER)
Reduction of accidents working at heights is currently the number one priority of the UK HSE. The 2009 statistics for the UK alone show over 4000 major injuries were caused by falls from height at work (source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/falls/). Many of these accidents occur due to equipment failure which could have been preventable if equipment had been thoroughly examined prior to use (European Priority 1). This equipment includes ropes, harnesses, connection devices, mobile platforms, ladders etc. This is supported through examination of new inspection techniques using appropriate technologies.
Euro Skills Trainer Register (ESTER)
The ESTER project has been designed to meet the needs of European skills trainers and VET organisations. Recent European statistics highlight an unacceptable workplace fatality rate associated with skilled operations undertaken in the agriculture and forestry sectors of industry. The ESTER project will focus on key high-risk activities within those sectors. For example, falls from a height and machinery crush injuries are well-known risks which can be better prevented through quality training provision. Partners aim to build upon the successful work of previous projects which developed, for example the International/European Chainsaw Certificate (ICC/ECC), with an aim to provide a recognised European skills trainer qualification. In order to enhance training delivery, the ESTER project aims to facilitate best practice & high-quality instruction standards & techniques amongst VET providers and skills trainers of courses across Europe and beyond, exchanging knowledge, training innovations and expertise in the process leading to safer trainers and trainees.
European Forest Machine Operators Certification (EFMO)
The EFMO project has been designed to the meet the needs & demands of European Forest Machine Operators-EFMO. Recent UK & European statistics highlight an unacceptable workplace fatality rate associated with skilled operations undertaken in the agriculture & forestry industries priority sectors for UK & EU health & safety authorities. The EFMO project will particularly focus on the use of forwarders, harvesters and tractors in mechanical harvesting operations & compare European skills & techniques employed.
European Utility Arborist (EUARB)
The EU-ARB project has been designed to the meet the needs of arborists involved within high risk UA activities particularly within energy sectors of industry responsible for vegetation/tree management. Recent European & UK statistics indicate a rising workplace fatality rate associated with hazardous work undertaken by arborists. Previous project partner research also reported related health & safety concerns within this sector & developed a framework for common European VET competence standards. These standards can be adapted & developed further for use within the Utility Arboriculture (UA) occupations. At the same time this project aims to facilitate best practice & high quality instruction amongst VET providers & skills trainers of UA courses across Europe & beyond, exchanging knowledge, training innovations & expertise in the process leading to safer trained arborists.