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Enthusiastic minister wants children to enjoy Dutch nature

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

NEELTJE JANS – Look for the attractions at home when considering holiday destinations abroad. A visit to the East Scheldt estuary would be a good start. That was the conclusion of Agriculture minister Gerda Verburg at the opening of the new visitors centre at Nationaal Park Oosterschelde. The minister also suggested that parents need to acquaint their children with nature and have them play outside, much like farmers keep full range chickens. To explore nature is an important component in raising children, the minister reminded her audience at the event. Verburg is also responsible for the separate Nature portfolio in her ministry, which includes the Food portfolio as well. The visitors centre is located in the former work island Neeltje Jans, where contractors molded the concrete parts when building the post-1950s Deltaworks flood protection system. The centre is home to a permanent exposition on the sensitive ecology of the estuary. A pathway takes visitors to nearby children-friendly tidal pools where they can view Zeeland’s myriad marine life.