Vestfold county governor
Funding support: Norwegian directorate of environment and self-generated income
Number of staff: 1.2 full time equivalent
Number of visitors per year: 15,000
Overall aims of the centre
Through information and positive experiences we want to raise awareness among the general public and young people, about the importance of nature and biodiversity and wetlands in particular. Our long-term aim is to turn them into guardians of our nature and contribute to its future protection.
Description of the centre
Only a short walk from Tønsberg city centre you can find an oasis where nature flourishes. Visitor centre wetland Ilene is situated by Ilene nature reserve. The wetlands on Ilene are especially important to birds during the spring and autumn migrations. Ilene nature reserve is of international importance, confirmed by it’s status as Ramsar site. Close to 300 bird species have been registered in the area.
Visitor centre wetland Ilene was one of around 30 cotter’s farms (smallholdings) under Jarlsberg estate. Vestfold Country governor use the centre to inform the general public and local schools about nature and conservation.
During spring and autumn the Country governor arranges open days for the general public with lots of activities for people of all ages. We have developed educational programmes from kindergarten up to university level. Hundreds of children and students visit Holmen each year to learn about the importance of wetlands and the species found in wetland habitats.
Main CEPA work areas
Visitor centre wetland Ilene aims to raise local and regional awareness about the importance of nature in Vestfold, Ilene and Presterødkilen ramsar site and wetland areas in general.
We have several educational programmes for children from the age of two to university level.
We arrange open days for the general public with activities for people of all ages.
We celebrate the Nordic-Baltic wetland day the 2nd of September each year with a “Wetland day for children”.
We have a bird tower and a nature trail with information posters
Top three successes
1) In 2012 we were designated as one of the five national wetland centres in Norway
2) We have developed educational programmes for children from the age of two to university level
3) We arrange very successful open days for the general public with activities for people of all ages
Creating signage; site information; Producing written materials; Using audio-visual tools
Managing / creating habitat; Running a visitor centre; Building / maintaining structures
Engaging young people; Engaging the local community; Working with volunteers
Education and communication
Early years education; Delivering adult education; Working with primary schools; Working with secondary schools; Developing resources / materials
Auditing / assessing effectiveness; PR and marketing; Running effective administration; Health and safety; Fund-raising; Project planning.