After the large participation to the first edition which saw the presentation of 340 applications, the new edition will also begin with a training course and then start activities in the field.
UPPER JOBS's objectives are to improve the skills and employability of participants in the horticultural sector, gardening, maintenance and management of urban green spaces and production parks and to reduce the level of inactivity, unemployment and the risk of poverty for vulnerable groups.
The UPPER JOBS training and work program is promoted by the Municipality of Latina in collaboration with the Labirinto Social Cooperative, the Roffredo Caetani Foundation and Latina Formazione Lavoro SRL.
The selected candidates, after a training period of 150 hours, will carry out a 6-month paid internship with an allowance of 600 euros per month for 18 hours of work per week in the redevelopment and management of the green areas of the UPPER project.
Conceptually, the NBS framework provides entry points to harmonize goals of several UN Conventions, such as on climate change, land degradation, biological diversity, and Sustainable Development Goals.
The concept of NBS promotes systemic approaches for social, environmental, and economic challenges by supporting, restoring, and maintaining the ecosystem and sustainable urbanization. It is emphasized that NBS provides innovative solutions to counteract societal challenges by using natural capital to create sustainable economic growth
During the 150-hour training course, which will be of a theoretical-practical type, the following topics will be addressed: characteristics and classification of living beings; plant anatomy and physiology; definition of climate, climatic characteristics, plant associations; elements of general and inorganic chemistry; soil formation and classification, improvement and conservation techniques; job security; main adversities and plant pathogens; phytosanitary treatments; cultivation techniques; environmental communication; the urban green and the ecosystemic emergencies of the Pontine territory; Nature Based Solutions.
The regeneration of the green areas involved in the project will improve the quality, accessibility and usability of these spaces. In addition, selected native plants will be grown in the production parks to combat soil and water pollution, the hydrogeological instability of the canals, the heat island effect and air pollution. The same species will be planted in eight demonstration sites and the effects on the environment of the NBS used will be measured and communicated to citizens through digital platforms.
The goal of the program was also to increase the trainees’ knowledge of environmental issues, such as waste management and water quality, and to help them understand the impact of their environmental decisions on community life and to integrate the concept of habitat and the interconnections between humans and wildlife.
Activities included discussions of the benefits of clean air, water and soil; the impact of air, water and soil pollution on humans and wildlife; how to keep the environment clean; and garden and tree planting.
Moreover, they deals with the water cycle, the impact of toxins on natural habitats, and the construction of watershed models that demonstrated how toxins are carried in a water system and potentially into drinking.
There’s growing evidence that gardening can benefit our mental health. Gardens can be relaxing, but also places where our efforts result in a real sense of achievement, boosting confidence and self-esteem. Therefore gardening practices have been chosen because they have positive effects on people’s mental health, helping to reduce depression, anxiety and stress-related symptoms, to alleviate the symptoms of dementia, such as aggressive behaviour, to increase the ability to concentrate and engage and to reduce reliance on medication, self-harming behaviour.