Friends of My Environment

By Anielka Hondoy, Program Assistant
Our students in a workshop on the environment
Our students in a workshop on the environment

For years, we have repeatedly witnessed how the rural community of Santa Ana is directly impacted by human-influenced environmental situations, such as flooding. Since the Santa Ana community relies heavily on agriculture for their livelihood, they can benefit significantly by modifying their mindset and behaviors to influence their environment positively. From our experience, the most impactful and sustainable solutions are ones driven directly by community members. For this dynamic to take place, the groundwork needs to be laid out. We now have a hands-on opportunity to change the future of our beloved community.

We are excited to welcome our new partner, Circle of Dreams, who is financing our newest project Amigos de Mi Ambiente (AMA) or Friends of My Environment. This new project offers a series of carefully constructed interactive workshops with environmental experts from Nicaragua and the USA. The goal is to develop awareness regarding critical environmental challenges impacting the community directly and then helping the participants understand some of the causes and explore possible solutions. Specifically, this project is providing practical tools for the children, adolescents, and parents to use in the rural community of Santa Ana that will help them support the environment, in lieu of degrading it.

With a curriculum emphasizing a project-based learning style, the community will use the knowledge acquired in the educational workshops to identify environmental problems they are facing in their own community. With critical thinking, they can determine and apply various solutions. It is our goal that they will become agents of change for their community and that it will lead to implementing projects that will get them started in becoming an environmentally friendly community.

The EI Team in an Environmental Training Class
The EI Team in an Environmental Training Class
Maynor Quiroz and  "profe" Ismael Raudez
Maynor Quiroz and "profe" Ismael Raudez

Maynor Quiroz, our rural development coordinator, and Santa Ana teacher Ismael Raudez will be the coordinators of this project. We are forging partnerships with such organizations as Proyecto de Paz and La Escuela de Naturalismo Undoubtedly, this will be a wonderful experience for the students and the Santa Ana community and they can start to learn how to become part of the global warming situation.