ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Eco-friendly organisations on the island join forces this summer to teach Antiguan & Barbudan youth the importance of “green” practices.
The Environmental Awareness Group of Antigua & Barbuda (EAG), Gilbert Agricultural & Rural Development Centre (GARD) and Peace Corp volunteers have once again partnered to offer children the opportunity to cultivate an appreciation for the island’s diverse eco-system with Camp GROW, which is an acronym for Gaining a Respect for the Outdoors and our World.
The EAG and the GARD Centre have developed a curriculum where they have combined their expertise. The EAG is focused on the environmental aspect and GARD Centre represents the agricultural aspect of the children’s camping programme.
Peace Corp volunteer and organiser of Camp GROW, Rachel Hall, said that the camp is a fun way for children to learn about the environment.
“A lot of our values and understanding about the world gets shaped when we are kids, so we have to instil a love for the environment, for agriculture and for protecting the island and engaging the community,” she said.
“If we can instil that in them from a young age, then they will carry it with them always.”
During the two-week day camp, participants will learn about recycling, how to compost and start a backyard garden, Hall noted.
The camp culminates with a day trip to Bird Island, where participants will bird watch and learn about the Antiguan Racer snake.
EAG president Dr Karron James urged parents to involve their children in environmental awareness initiatives.
“We are trying to expose both the parents and the children,” she said.
“Think of the things that you may not have been exposed to as a child … These things are important and they could make the difference in terms of the kind of world your children are going to live in,” James said.
Camp GROW is for children between the ages of eight and 11 and will be held at the GARD Centre between August 11 and 24. For registration information contact 463-4121 or www.gardc.org/camp-grow.