The Nature and Environment House (HNU), which is open all year round, enables city children to meet nature. During the school year on weekdays, school classes as well as daycare groups can carry out excursions or project days. Supervised by trained educators, age-appropriate environmental education activities are offered, which are suitable as a complement to biology, social studies and project lessons. In addition, the Nature and the Environment House serves as an integration project for the meeting of disabled and non-disabled people. On weekends and holidays, the extensive complex is available to families with children for a sustainable nature experience.
The 17,000 sqm outdoor area is designed as a spacious garden with ponds, outdoor terrarium, animal enclosures, petting zoo and horse paddock including riding area. A total of 300 animals can be observed here. In the house itself there is a natural history exhibition on the topics “Forest” and “Wonder World Soil”, as well as terrariums, aquariums and aviaries, cabinets for experimentation and microscopy as well as an extensive collection of insects and specimens.
In addition, the HNU offers children the opportunity to celebrate a great birthday party with their friends on the premises, with crafts, pony rides and animal tours on the program. The birthday child can look forward to a colourful birthday table with lots of treats.
“Delicious” (“Lecker”) is also the motto of the Waldcafé in the HNU. Here, visitors can take a break and enjoy homemade hot and cold dishes. A chat on the terrace with coffee and cakes from the USE Patisserie is particularly popular.
During the school year, educational events and working groups for pupils take place. There are also regular events such as the monthly Theme Sunday/Action X, which are adapted to the seasons and which also give adults a deeper insight into the mysteries of nature.
The Nature and Environment House regularly invites you to a craft workshop: try out printing techniques, make owls out of egg cartons or produce forest animals from natural materials – the offers are varied.
All events and dates can be found on the HNU website.
Since 1955, the Nature and Environment House has been providing children and young people with insights into the mysteries of nature – at that time as the Department of Natural Sciences of the Pioneer Park. as the Department In the Department of Natural Sciences there were the sections for hunting and forestry, small animal species as well as nature and environmental protection. Children could spend their free time in the working groups of young foresters, young biologists, young agrarians, young entomologists, young keepers, young gardeners and young terrarium keepers. Pony rides, handicrafts with natural materials and experimentation were also on the agenda at that time.
Behind the Department of Natural Sciences, a bear kennel was built in 1956, in which Bubi and Puppi, two bears from the Köllnische Park, and the Altai bear Iwo lived. Later, six raccoons were housed here.
In 2005 the USE GmbH took over the facility as a youth education workshop. With its programme, the USE aims to actively contribute to the conservation of our natural environment.