Climate Change and Cultural Diversity Project 2017

As the Trusts continue to support projects that have a visible and lasting impact, Richmond Vale Academy, St. Vincent welcomed 24 teenagers at Easter to take an in depth look at environmental issues. Their visionary environmental education programmes highlight climate change management and small island economies with fragile ecosystems. This is the second occasion that the Trusts have enabled teenage students to study environmental issues with the first successful programme taking place in 2016.

Classroom sessions were backed up by activities and practical experiences such as planting trees to stablise coastal area and river banks. The beach clean-up at Richmond Beach demonstrated the dangers of plastics to the environment and marine life.

Climate Change and Cultural Diversity Project 2017

The environmental education was as important as the cultural exchange that took place between the students, none of whom had met each other before. 12 Vincentian students from six secondary schools were joined by 12 students and two teachers from David Ross Educational Trust Academies in England. For many it was profoundly life changing, close friendships were formed and experiences shared. The rigorous climb to the Soufriere volcano was daunting but made easier with the encouragement from climbing buddies. The trip to Owia was another highlight, to learn about the Carib culture of the area – punta and quadrille dancing, visiting a cassava factory and seeing and hearing about the disruption caused to small rural communities by excessive rainfall in recent years.

The students experienced the complete range of the biodiversity of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and whilst in Mustique they learned about turtle conservation followed up by swimming among them in the Tobago Cays National Park.

This exciting and at times demanding programme would not have been possible without the enthusiasm and coordination by the Richmond Vale Academy staff, the support of the Davis Ross Education Trust and guidance from the Ministry of Education. The Trusts also thank the many people who gave their time and knowledge to make each field visit an insightful experience. We look forward to providing support for similar environmental projects in the future.

Climate Change and Cultural Diversity Project 2017

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