08 / Sep / 2020
For more than 17 years, our environmental education program has been working with boys and girls from the Osa Peninsula communities.
Every week our environmental educator, Helena, taught 155 children in 6 schools and held meetings in the afternoons with 45 boys and girls from 4 different communities.
For most of them, these were the only extracurricular activity alternatives available in their town.
The little ones learned about the environment and learned about self-esteem, respect, responsibility, and other values: values to empower them to become the next environmental leaders of tomorrow.
Virtual challenges of environmental education
The COVID 19 pandemic put a stop to our face-to-face activities. We have encountered a great challenge, how to transform a voluntary and playful event in which one learns through play and sensitizes children about the importance of the environment that surrounds them into an activity that follows the same principles, and that could be done remotely. Osa is an isolated area, with few economic resources and with a low-quality internet.
These are weekly activities that propose practical actions for the boys and girls, which they can do from the safety of their homes or their gardens.
We did not know if this was going to work! The response has been beautiful and we are super happy because the children have not abandoned the activities, and their parents and guardians are now involved with great enthusiasm. Many of these parents had never received environmental education before and now are learning with their kids.
Helena tells us how, on one occasion, there was no challenge for a week, and during a routine visit to the mechanic, his daughter approached her to ask:
“Excuse me, when is the next challenge?”
She was eager to continue learning. We know that these challenges are motivation and a source of inspiration for these boys and girls, this is why we have not given up, and we continue coming up with new challenges for all of them.
Today we are facing this global crisis caused by the COVID 19 Pandemic. More and more, we are facing the global crisis that is being produced by climate change and the influence of human beings on the planet. If future generations understand the importance of the environment and are agents of change, there will still be a possibility that the future will be different.