The Republican Center for Ecology and Local History has expanded its laboratory for the study of water systems under the financial support of Coca-Cola in Belarus

On October 21, The Republican Center for Ecology and Local History hosted a Forum for young researchers. While the Forum, an additional room of the laboratory for the study of biodiversity and anthropogenic factors of aquatic ecosystems was opened. The events are dedicated to celebrating the anniversary of the Center, which turns 90 this year.
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The water laboratory consists of two rooms – a classroom and a room for storing and preparing the research equipment. This year, the Center has carried our reconstruction of the second room, a storage room, thus expanding the space for carrying out experiments. Now, all the reorganized premises provide all the conditions necessary for research activities: repairs have been carried out, special furniture and technical equipment have been purchased. The children's laboratory for the study of water systems was opened in 2017. The purchase of the specialized modern equipment and furniture for the classroom, as well as for the storage room, was financed by Coca-Cola in Belarus.

Tatiana Simanovskaya, Head of the Department of Youth Affairs of the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus, and Andrei Roschupkin, first Deputy General Director of Coca‑Cola HBC Belarus, were solemnly invited to cut the red ribbon.

In the laboratory young ecologists are trained to participate in international Olympiads. Students of the Center annually bring awards from prestigious competitions. Thus, for example, in 2020 it was a gold medal at the Vilnius International Project Olympiad, gold and silver medals for research projects at the Olympiad in Malaysia.

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Annually, the Center's students take part in the National stage of Stockholm Junior Water Prize, the largest international competition where scholars present their projects in the field of water resource management, with focus on a practical result. Since 2007, Coca‑Cola HBC Belarus has supported the National stage of the competition and the participation of Belarusian representatives in the final. By 2020, over 15 Belarusian scholars received an opportunity to compete for victory in Sweden.

Ivan Russkikh, head of the laboratory and member of the jury of the National stage of Stockholm Junior Water Prize, has been preparing the winners for the International final in Sweden for four years already.

Ivan notes that the competition is important both for stimulating research activities and for the development of ecological culture of the participants: “The main task of the Republican Junior Water Prize is to encourage research and innovation activities among students and youth in the field of water protection, as well as promotion of social activity towards the rational use of water resources and public participation in preserving the quality of water bodies”.

Over the years, the functionality of the existing laboratory has significantly expanded. This is due to the high level of demand for laboratory resources and equipment from both teachers and students from all over the country.

Water is a key ingredient in Coca-Cola products. Responsible use of water resources and support of water stewardship projects are among the main priorities of the Coca-Cola System's business. We have been cooperating with the Republican Center for Ecology and Local History for 10 years already. We are united by a common goal – care for the country's environment and promotion of the responsible consumption and production values. Therefore, Coca-Cola in Belarus in addition to financing training in the field of protection and replenishment of water resources organizes the Republican Cleanup campaign “We Care” together with the Center. Volunteers from over 15 universities and colleges of the country are engaged in cleaning forest parks and coastal zones.

Andrei Roschupkin First Deputy General Director of Coca‑Cola HBC Belarus

Protection of water resources is a global strategic priority of the Coca-Cola System. This priority is consonant with the SDGs of the Republic of Belarus, as well as the UN Sustainable Development Goals.