On 24-26 June 2022, the first Wadden Sea March (Waddenmars) was held in the Netherlands. Nearly 30 young adults participated in this unique event in the Dutch Wadden Sea area, organised by the Programme Towards a Rich Wadden Sea. En route, they learned from locals and experts about present and future issues regarding the Wadden Sea World Heritage. The event paves the way to the first-ever Trilateral Youth Conference on the Wadden Sea, to be held in St. Peter-Ording on 1-4 September.
The young adults started they marches in three groups, one for each province (Noord-Holland, Friesland and Groningen). Halfway through the weekend the groups joint forces in Moddergat (Friesland), where a shared programme aided them towards writing a manifest for the future of the Wadden Sea – an input for the Conference in autumn. The manifest contains dream perspectives of the group on various Wadden Sea subjects, based on their own insights as well as insights gathered during the march. The group chose the title ‘Waddenbalans’, because every aspect in the Wadden Sea area has to be in balance with each other, most noticeably: human activities and nature.
At the end of the event, the young adults handed over their document to Donné Slangen, the Director-General of Nature, Fishery and Rural Area. He will pass it on to the Dutch Minister Christianne van der Wal to read and review the manifest. The Waddenmars group will have a joint evaluation of the manifest in a future meeting to learn from the feedback and further develop their document. Many of the participants are interested in joining the Trilateral Youth Conference, where they can present their dream perspectives on the Wadden Sea World Heritage