Center for Getting Things Started works with students, teachers, and organizations to incorporate and live an ethic of sustainability in practice.

WHAT is Education for Sustainability?

Education  for Sustainability (EfS) is defined as a transformative learning process that equips students, teachers, and school systems with the new knowledge and ways of thinking we need to achieve economic prosperity and responsible citizenship while restoring the health of the living  systems upon which our lives depend.

Chapter 36 of Agenda 21 of the Rio Declaration directly addresses issues of education in relation to sustainable development in four main areas:

(1)  improve basic education,

(2) reorient existing education to address sustainable development,

(3) develop public understanding, awareness, and

(4) training (McKeown et. al, 2002).

Education  for Sustainability was formed out of the recognition that there is a distinct difference between “education about sustainable development and  education for sustainable development.” The former was seen to be a theoretical exercise while the latter asked for the educative process to  be used as a tool to achieve sustainability (McKeown, 2002).

Education for sustainability answers this call to equip students to be able to address issues of sustainability, including our warming planet.

WHY implement Education for Sustainability?

According to the October 2018 report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), we are currently seeing the negative effects of 1°C of global warming that has occurred since industrialization in the form of more extreme weather, rising sea levels, and diminishing Arctic sea ice. “The report finds that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require ‘rapid and far-reaching’ transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050.” In order to address this urgent call to action in the face of climate change, C4GTS is working with educators and schools through EfS to reduce their carbon footprint and cultivate a culture of environmental stewardship.

HOW we implement Education for Sustainability


Each of our short term services can run in length from a half-day (awareness, skill development) to five days (curriculum design and development) depending on the depth of knowledge and skills desired. Our long term services can run in length from one year to ten years. The length of each engagement depends on the readiness, the needs and aspirations of each individual client. Some are just starting and other places have been educating for sustainability for a long time.  Whatever your situation, we can tailor a program or service to meet your needs.

Dr. Koh Ming Wei leads our Education for Sustainability team and has a depth of experience in educating for sustainability, She holds a PhD in sustainability education and has been working across the Pacific region since 2014. She has worked in Hawai’i to uplift the school garden movement through curriculum development, teacher trainings and more. In Micronesia, she has developed curricula around sustainability alongside teachers and school officials, uplifting and supporting school gardens across the region. She has trained with Jaimie Cloud at the Cloud institute.